Federal Register Vol. 82, No.198,

Federal Register Volume 82, Issue 198 (October 16, 2017)

Page Range47953-48192
FR Document

82_FR_198
Current View
Page and SubjectPDF
82 FR 47964 - Amendment of Restricted Areas R-3004A and R-3004B and Establishment of R-3004C; Fort Gordon, GAPDF
82 FR 48191 - General Pulaski Memorial Day, 2017PDF
82 FR 48123 - Sunshine Act: Notice of Agency MeetingPDF
82 FR 48081 - Sunshine Act; Notice of Board Member Meeting: Federal Retirement Thrift Investment BoardPDF
82 FR 48144 - Changes to SBA Secondary Market ProgramPDF
82 FR 47958 - Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program; Modification of Lending CriteriaPDF
82 FR 48050 - Notice of Determination of the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease Status of JapanPDF
82 FR 48102 - Proposed Standards for the Children's Hospitals Graduate Medical Education Payment Program's Quality Bonus SystemPDF
82 FR 48147 - Petition for Exemption; Summary of Petition Received; The Boeing CompanyPDF
82 FR 48075 - Receipt of Information Under the Toxic Substances Control ActPDF
82 FR 48148 - Railroad Safety Advisory Committee; Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 48066 - Defense Innovation Board; Notice of Federal Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
82 FR 48074 - Access to Confidential Business Information by Patriot L.L.C. and Its Identified Subcontractor, Vision Technologies, Inc.PDF
82 FR 48065 - Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 48065 - South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 48063 - Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingsPDF
82 FR 48064 - New England Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 48063 - Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 48018 - Prosthetic and Rehabilitative Items and ServicesPDF
82 FR 47996 - Fenpicoxamid; Pesticide TolerancesPDF
82 FR 48000 - Triflumezopyrim; Pesticide TolerancesPDF
82 FR 48074 - Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Aircraft Engines-Supplemental Information Related to Exhaust Emissions (Renewal)PDF
82 FR 48081 - Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding CompaniesPDF
82 FR 48081 - Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding CompanyPDF
82 FR 48153 - Employees Whose Association With For-Profit Educational Institutions Poses No Detriment to VeteransPDF
82 FR 48077 - Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (Renewal)PDF
82 FR 48035 - Repeal of Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating UnitsPDF
82 FR 48007 - Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Trimester 2 Georges Bank Cod Total Allowable Catch Area Closure; Updated 2017 Georges Bank Cod Annual Catch Limit for the Common Pool; Possession Prohibition for the Common Pool FisheryPDF
82 FR 48098 - Request for Nominations for Individuals and Consumer Organizations for Advisory CommitteesPDF
82 FR 48123 - Notification of a Public Meeting of the President's Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and the Opioid Crisis (Commission)PDF
82 FR 48087 - Application of Biological Monitoring Methods for Chemical Exposures in Occupational HealthPDF
82 FR 48080 - Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission Under Delegated AuthorityPDF
82 FR 48079 - Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications CommissionPDF
82 FR 48005 - Procedures for Commission Review of State Opt-Out Request From the FirstNet Radio Access NetworkPDF
82 FR 48107 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Documentation Requirements for Articles Entered Under Various Special Tariff Treatment ProvisionsPDF
82 FR 48109 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Application for Waiver of Passport and/or VisaPDF
82 FR 48108 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Generic Clearance for the Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service DeliveryPDF
82 FR 48085 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 48081 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 47975 - Update to Alternative Planning Criteria National GuidelinesPDF
82 FR 48144 - Presidential Declaration of a Major Disaster for Public Assistance Only for the U.S. Virgin IslandsPDF
82 FR 48145 - Presidential Declaration Amendment of a Major Disaster for Public Assistance Only for the State of FloridaPDF
82 FR 48076 - Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings (Renewal)PDF
82 FR 48061 - Narrow Woven Ribbons With Woven Selvedge From Taiwan; Final Determination of No Shipments; 2015-2016PDF
82 FR 48060 - Certain Pasta From Italy: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; 2015PDF
82 FR 48051 - Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative ReviewsPDF
82 FR 48060 - Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Advance Notification of Sunset ReviewsPDF
82 FR 47971 - Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 Into Schedule IPDF
82 FR 48145 - U.S. Department of State Advisory Committee on Private International Law (ACPIL): Public Meeting on Online Dispute ResolutionPDF
82 FR 48146 - U.S. Advisory Panel to the U.S. Section of the North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission (Notice of Renewal)PDF
82 FR 48145 - Notice of Determinations: Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition Determinations: “Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dress From the Collection of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem” ExhibitionPDF
82 FR 48066 - Submission for OMB Review; Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 48096 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Medical Devices; Humanitarian Use DevicesPDF
82 FR 48151 - Pipeline Safety: Coastal Ecological Unusually Sensitive Areas Public MeetingPDF
82 FR 48113 - Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe From Japan and RomaniaPDF
82 FR 48087 - Proposed Data Collection Submitted for Public Comment and RecommendationsPDF
82 FR 48069 - Certification Notice-250; Notice of Filing of Self-Certification of Coal Capability Under the Powerplant and Industrial Fuel Use ActPDF
82 FR 48103 - Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and ChildrenPDF
82 FR 48149 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: VesselM/V PACIFIC PROVIDER; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
82 FR 48150 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel CHIN CHIN; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
82 FR 48150 - Requested Administrative Waiver of the Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel BELLAROMA; Invitation for Public CommentsPDF
82 FR 48147 - Meeting of the Regional Resource Stewardship CouncilPDF
82 FR 48068 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) for Disbursing Title IV Aid to Students With Intellectual Disabilities Expenditure ReportPDF
82 FR 48067 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Student Assistance General Provision-Subpart I-Immigration Status ConfirmationPDF
82 FR 48068 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Third Party Servicer Data CollectionPDF
82 FR 47967 - Medical Devices; Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of the Automated Image Assessment System for Microbial Colonies on Solid Culture MediaPDF
82 FR 48112 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Class III Tribal-State Gaming Compact ProcessPDF
82 FR 48109 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Solicitation of Nominations for the Advisory Board for Exceptional ChildrenPDF
82 FR 48110 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Certificate of Degree of Indian or Alaska Native BloodPDF
82 FR 48111 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Reporting Systems for Public Law 102-477 Demonstration ProjectPDF
82 FR 48124 - Public Availability of the National Science Foundation Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Service Contract Inventory and Associated DocumentsPDF
82 FR 48093 - Department of Health and Human Services, Supply Service Center et al.; Withdrawal of Approval of 27 Abbreviated New Drug Applications; CorrectionPDF
82 FR 48078 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 48078 - Agency Information Collection Activities: Comments RequestPDF
82 FR 48123 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978PDF
82 FR 48124 - Notice of Permit Modification Received Under the Antarctic Conservation Act of 1978PDF
82 FR 48089 - Proposed Information Collection Activity; Comment RequestPDF
82 FR 47974 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Cerritos Channel, Long Beach, CAPDF
82 FR 47975 - Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Grand Lake, Calcasieu Parish, LouisianaPDF
82 FR 48106 - Navigation Safety Advisory CouncilPDF
82 FR 48080 - Notice to All Interested Parties of the Termination of the Receivership of 10401-Blue Ridge Savings Bank, Inc.; Asheville, North CarolinaPDF
82 FR 48125 - Instructions for Recording and Reporting Occupational Radiation Dose DataPDF
82 FR 48093 - Post-Complete Response Letter Meetings Between the Food and Drug Administration and Abbreviated New Drug Application Applicants Under the Generic Drug User Fee Act; Draft Guidance for Industry; AvailabilityPDF
82 FR 47965 - Medical Devices; Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of the Nucleic Acid-Based Device for the Amplification, Detection, and Identification of Microbial Pathogens Directly From Whole Blood SpecimensPDF
82 FR 47969 - Medical Devices; Gastroenterology-Urology Devices; Classification of the Enzyme Packed CartridgePDF
82 FR 48095 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for Office of Management and Budget Review; Comment Request; Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified by the Environmental Protection Agency Pursuant to Dietary Risk ConsiderationsPDF
82 FR 48092 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for Office of Management and Budget Review; Comment Request; Guidance for Industry on Registration of Human Drug Compounding Outsourcing Facilities Under Section 503B of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic ActPDF
82 FR 48090 - Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for Office of Management and Budget Review; Comment Request; Guidance for Industry on Fees for Human Drug Compounding Outsourcing Facilities Under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic ActPDF
82 FR 48087 - Performance Review Board MembersPDF
82 FR 48006 - Hazardous Materials: Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable TrainsPDF
82 FR 48070 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
82 FR 48071 - Combined Notice of Filings #2PDF
82 FR 48152 - Community Development Advisory Board MeetingPDF
82 FR 48072 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
82 FR 48073 - Combined Notice of FilingsPDF
82 FR 48071 - SEMASS Partnership; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 AuthorizationPDF
82 FR 48071 - Combined Notice of Filings #1PDF
82 FR 48126 - Performance Review Boards for Senior Executive ServicePDF
82 FR 48008 - Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota TransferPDF
82 FR 48118 - Affirmative Decisions on Petitions for Modification Granted in Whole or in PartPDF
82 FR 48115 - Petitions for Modification of Application of Existing Mandatory Safety StandardsPDF
82 FR 48119 - Forging Machines; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) RequirementsPDF
82 FR 48121 - Subpart A (“General Provisions”) and Subpart B (“Confined and Enclosed Spaces and Other Dangerous Atmospheres in Shipyard Employment”); Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) RequirementsPDF
82 FR 48113 - Certain Industrial Automation Systems and Components Thereof Including Control Systems, Controllers, Visualization Hardware, Motion and Motor Control Systems, Networking Equipment, Safety Devices, and Power Supplies; Institution of InvestigationPDF
82 FR 48112 - Titanium Sponge From Japan and Kazakhstan; DeterminationsPDF
82 FR 48051 - Notice of Public Meetings of the Kansas Advisory Committee to Discuss Next Steps in the Committee's Study of Civil Rights and School Funding in KansasPDF
82 FR 48140 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; MIAX PEARL, LLC; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change To Amend the MIAX PEARL Fee SchedulePDF
82 FR 48127 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; NYSE Arca, Inc.; Notice of Filing of Proposed Rule Change To List and Trade Shares of the JPMorgan Equity Long/Short ETF Under NYSE Arca Rule 8.600-EPDF
82 FR 48135 - Self-Regulatory Organizations; Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board; Notice of Filing and Immediate Effectiveness of a Proposed Rule Change to MSRB Rule A-11, on Assessments for Municipal Advisor Professionals, To Amend the Annual Municipal Advisor Professional FeePDF
82 FR 48104 - National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
82 FR 48105 - Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed MeetingsPDF
82 FR 48146 - Wisconsin Central Ltd.-Discontinuance of Service Exemption-in Oneida and Marinette Counties, Wis.PDF
82 FR 48089 - Agency Forms Undergoing Paperwork Reduction Act Review-Evaluation of the National Tobacco Prevention and Control Public Education Campaign; CorrectionPDF
82 FR 48033 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality StandardsPDF
82 FR 47981 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality StandardsPDF
82 FR 47992 - Air Plan Approval: Georgia; New Source Review and Permitting UpdatesPDF
82 FR 47993 - Air Plan Approval; Georgia: New Source Review UpdatesPDF
82 FR 48105 - National Institute on Drug Abuse; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
82 FR 48104 - National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed MeetingPDF
82 FR 48105 - National Cancer Institute Amended; Notice of MeetingPDF
82 FR 47985 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for OzonePDF
82 FR 48035 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for OzonePDF
82 FR 47988 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions from Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, Miscellaneous Plastic Parts Surface Coating, and Pleasure Craft Surface CoatingsPDF
82 FR 48034 - Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions From Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, Miscellaneous Plastic Parts Surface Coating, and Pleasure Craft Surface CoatingsPDF
82 FR 47960 - Establishment of Class E Airspace; Onida, SDPDF
82 FR 47961 - Amendment of Class E Airspace; Hebron, NEPDF
82 FR 48011 - Proposed Amendment of VOR Federal Airways V-20, V-31, V-33, V-308, and V-433; and Revocation of V-379; in the Vicinity of Nottingham, MDPDF
82 FR 47962 - Amendment of Class E Airspace; Clarinda, IAPDF
82 FR 48010 - Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace; Charles City, IAPDF
82 FR 47959 - Amendment of Class E Airspace; Canadian, TX; and Wheeler, TXPDF
82 FR 48030 - Air Plan Approval; Ohio; Regional Haze Five-Year Progress Report State Implementation PlanPDF
82 FR 47983 - Air Plan Approval; Florida; Interstate Transport (Prongs 1 and 2) for the 2010 1-hour NO2PDF
82 FR 48013 - Grid Reliability and Resilience PricingPDF
82 FR 48013 - Executive Order 13789-Second Report to the President on Identifying and Reducing Tax Regulatory BurdensPDF
82 FR 48148 - Notice of Final Federal Agency Action on Proposed Transportation Project in IllinoisPDF
82 FR 48069 - Electrical Interconnection of the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line ProjectPDF
82 FR 48153 - Debt Management Advisory Committee MeetingPDF
82 FR 48156 - National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Nutritional Yeast Manufacturing Residual Risk and Technology ReviewPDF
82 FR 47953 - Mortgage Servicing Rules Under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X)PDF

Issue

82 198 Monday, October 16, 2017 Contents Agriculture Agriculture Department See

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Animal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service NOTICES Determination of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease Status of Japan, 48050-48051 2017-22382 Bonneville Bonneville Power Administration NOTICES Records of Decisions: Electrical Interconnection of Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project, 48069 2017-22046 Consumer Financial Protection Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection RULES Mortgage Servicing Rules Under Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X), 47953-47958 2017-21912 Centers Disease Centers for Disease Control and Prevention NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48087-48089 2017-22317 Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Evaluation of National Tobacco Prevention and Control Public Education Campaign; Correction, 48089 2017-22256 Guidance: Application of Biological Monitoring Methods for Chemical Exposures in Occupational Health, 48087 2017-22342 Performance Review Board Members, 48087 2017-22282 Children Children and Families Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48089-48090 2017-22294 Civil Rights Civil Rights Commission NOTICES Meetings: Kansas Advisory Committee, 48051 2017-22265 Coast Guard Coast Guard RULES Alternative Planning Criteria National Guidelines, 47975-47981 2017-22333 Drawbridge Operations: Cerritos Channel, Long Beach, CA, 47974-47975 2017-22293 Grand Lake, Calcasieu Parish, LA, 47975 2017-22292 NOTICES Meetings: Navigation Safety Advisory Council, 48106-48107 2017-22291 Commerce Commerce Department See

International Trade Administration

See

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Community Development Community Development Financial Institutions Fund NOTICES Meetings: Community Development Advisory Board, 48152-48153 2017-22278 Defense Department Defense Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48066 2017-22321 Meetings: Defense Innovation Board, 48066-48067 2017-22367 Drug Drug Enforcement Administration RULES Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 Into Schedule I, 47971-47974 2017-22325 Education Department Education Department NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Comprehensive Transition Program for Disbursing Title IV Aid to Students With Intellectual Disabilities Expenditure Report, 48068-48069 2017-22308 Student Assistance General Provision—Subpart I—Immigration Status Confirmation, 48067-48068 2017-22307 Third Party Servicer Data Collection, 48068 2017-22306 Energy Department Energy Department See

Bonneville Power Administration

See

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

NOTICES Filing of Self-Certification of Coal Capability Under Powerplant and Industrial Fuel Use Act; Certification Notice-250, 48069-48070 2017-22314
Environmental Protection Environmental Protection Agency RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Florida; Interstate Transport (Prongs 1 and 2) for 2010 1-hour NO2 Standard, 47983-47985 2017-22229 Georgia; New Source Review and Permitting Updates, 47992-47993 2017-22251 Georgia; New Source Review Updates, 47993-47996 2017-22250 Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions From Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, etc., 47988-47992 2017-22241 Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for Ozone, 47985-47988 2017-22243 West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards, 47981-47983 2017-22254 National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Nutritional Yeast Manufacturing Residual Risk and Technology Review, 48156-48187 2017-21937 Pesticide Tolerances: Fenpicoxamid, 47996-48000 2017-22357 Triflumezopyrim, 48000-48005 2017-22356 PROPOSED RULES Air Quality State Implementation Plans; Approvals and Promulgations: Ohio; Regional Haze Five-Year Progress Report State Implementation Plan, 48030-48033 2017-22230 Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions From Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, etc., 48034-48035 2017-22240 Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for Ozone, 48035 2017-22242 West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards, 48033-48034 2017-22255 Repeal of Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units, 48035-48049 2017-22349 NOTICES Access to Confidential Business Information: Patriot, LLC and Its Identified Subcontractor, Vision Technologies, Inc., 48074-48075 2017-22366 Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Aircraft Engines—Supplemental Information Related to Exhaust Emissions, 48074 2017-22355 Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium Under the Safe Drinking Water Act, 48077-48078 2017-22350 National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings, 48076-48077 2017-22330 Toxic Substances Control Act: Receipt of Information, 48075-48076 2017-22369 Export Import Export-Import Bank NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48078-48079 2017-22297 2017-22298 Federal Aviation Federal Aviation Administration RULES Amendment of Class E Airspace: Clarinda, IA, 47962-47964 2017-22234 Hebron, NE, 47961-47962 2017-22236 Amendment of Restricted Areas: R-3004A and R-3004B and Establishment of R-3004C; Fort Gordon, GA, 47964-47965 R1--2017--20435 Class E Airspace; Amendments: Canadian and Wheeler, TX, 47959-47960 2017-22232 Establishment of Class E Airspace: Onida, SD, 47960-47961 2017-22238 PROPOSED RULES Amendment of Class E Airspace: Charles City, IA, 48010-48011 2017-22233 Amendment of VOR Federal Airways V-20, V-31, V-33, V-308, and V-433; Revocation of V-379: Vicinity of Nottingham, MD, 48011-48013 2017-22235 NOTICES Petitions for Exemptions; Summaries: Boeing Co., 48147-48148 2017-22376 Federal Communications Federal Communications Commission RULES Procedures for Commission Review of State Opt-Out Request From FirstNet Radio Access Network, 48005-48006 2017-22339 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48079-48080 2017-22340 2017-22341 Federal Deposit Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation NOTICES Receiverships; Terminations: 10401; Blue Ridge Savings Bank, Inc.; Asheville, NC, 48080-48081 2017-22290 Federal Energy Federal Energy Regulatory Commission PROPOSED RULES Grid Reliability and Resilience Pricing, 48013 2017-22215 NOTICES Combined Filings, 48070-48073 2017-22274 2017-22276 2017-22277 2017-22279 2017-22280 Initial Market-Based Rate Filings Including Requests for Blanket Section 204 Authorizations: SEMASS Partnership, 48071 2017-22275 Federal Highway Federal Highway Administration NOTICES Federal Agency Actions: Illinois; Proposed Transportation Project, 48148 2017-22176 Federal Railroad Federal Railroad Administration NOTICES Meetings: Railroad Safety Advisory Committee, 48148-48149 2017-22368 Federal Reserve Federal Reserve System NOTICES Changes in Bank Control: Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding Company, 48081 2017-22353 Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies, 48081 2017-22354 Federal Retirement Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 48081 2017-22487 Federal Trade Federal Trade Commission NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48081-48087 2017-22334 2017-22335 Food and Drug Food and Drug Administration RULES Medical Devices: Gastroenterology-Urology Devices; Classification of Enzyme Packed Cartridge, 47969-47971 2017-22286 Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of Automated Image Assessment System for Microbial Colonies on Solid Culture Media, 47967-47969 2017-22305 Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of Nucleic Acid-Based Device for Amplification, Detection, and Identification of Microbial Pathogens Directly From Whole Blood Specimens, 47965-47967 2017-22287 NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Channels of Trade Policy for Commodities With Residues of Pesticide Chemicals, for Which Tolerances Have Been Revoked, Suspended, or Modified, etc., 48095-48096 2017-22285 Guidance for Industry on Fees for Human Drug Compounding Outsourcing Facilities Under Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, 48090-48092 2017-22283 Guidance for Industry on Registration of Human Drug Compounding Outsourcing Facilities Under Section 503B of Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, 48092-48093 2017-22284 Medical Devices; Humanitarian Use Devices, 48096-48098 2017-22320 Guidance: Post-Complete Response Letter Meetings Between Food and Drug Administration and Abbreviated New Drug Application Applicants Under Generic Drug User Fee Act, 48093-48095 2017-22288 New Drug Applications: Department of Health and Human Services, Supply Service Center et al.; Withdrawal of Approval of 27 Abbreviated New Drug Applications; Correction, 48093 2017-22299 Requests for Nominations: Individuals and Consumer Organizations for Advisory Committees, 48098-48102 2017-22344 Health and Human Health and Human Services Department See

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

See

Children and Families Administration

See

Food and Drug Administration

See

Health Resources and Services Administration

See

National Institutes of Health

Health Resources Health Resources and Services Administration NOTICES Meetings: Advisory Committee on Heritable Disorders in Newborns and Children, 48103-48104 2017-22313 Proposed Standards for Children's Hospitals Graduate Medical Education Payment Program's Quality Bonus System, 48102-48103 2017-22381 Homeland Homeland Security Department See

Coast Guard

See

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

Indian Affairs Indian Affairs Bureau NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Certificate of Degree of Indian or Alaska Native Blood, 48110-48111 2017-22302 Class III Tribal-State Gaming Compact Process, 48112 2017-22304 Reporting Systems for Demonstration Project, 48111-48112 2017-22301 Solicitation of Nominations for Advisory Board for Exceptional Children, 48109-48110 2017-22303 Interior Interior Department See

Indian Affairs Bureau

International Trade Adm International Trade Administration NOTICES Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews, 48051-48060 2017-22327 Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Investigations, Orders, or Reviews: Advance Notification of Sunset Reviews, 48060 2017-22326 Certain Pasta From Italy, 48060-48061 2017-22328 Narrow Woven Ribbons With Woven Selvedge From Taiwan, 48061-48063 2017-22329 International Trade Com International Trade Commission NOTICES Investigations; Determinations, Modifications, and Rulings, etc.: Carbon and Alloy Seamless Standard, Line, and Pressure Pipe From Japan and Romania, 48113 2017-22318 Certain Industrial Automation Systems and Components Thereof Including Control Systems, Controllers, Visualization Hardware, Motion and Motor Control Systems, Networking Equipment, Safety Devices, and Power Supplies, 48113-48115 2017-22267 Titanium Sponge From Japan and Kazakhstan, 48112-48113 2017-22266 Justice Department Justice Department See

Drug Enforcement Administration

Labor Department Labor Department See

Mine Safety and Health Administration

See

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

Maritime Maritime Administration NOTICES Requests for Administrative Waivers of Coastwise Trade Laws: Vessel BELLAROMA, 48150 2017-22310 Vessel CHIN CHIN, 48150-48151 2017-22311 Vessel M/V PACIFIC, 48149-48150 2017-22312 Mine Mine Safety and Health Administration NOTICES Petitions for Modifications: Affirmative Decisions, 48118-48119 2017-22271 Application of Existing Mandatory Safety Standards, 48115-48118 2017-22270 National Credit National Credit Union Administration NOTICES Meetings; Sunshine Act, 48123 2017-22506 National Drug National Drug Control Policy Office NOTICES Meetings: President's Commission on Combating Drug Addiction and Opioid Crisis, 48123 2017-22343 National Institute National Institutes of Health NOTICES Meetings: Center for Scientific Review, 48105-48106 2017-22258 National Cancer Institute, 48104-48105 2017-22245 2017-22246 National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, 48104 2017-22259 National Institute on Drug Abuse, 48105 2017-22247 National Oceanic National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RULES Fisheries of the Northeastern United States: Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Trimester 2 Georges Bank Cod Total Allowable Catch Area Closure; Updated 2017 Georges Bank Cod Annual Catch Limit for Common Pool; Possession Prohibition for Common Pool Fishery, 48007-48008 2017-22347 Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota Transfer, 48008-48009 2017-22272 NOTICES Meetings: Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 48063 2017-22361 Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 48065 2017-22363 New England Fishery Management Council, 48064 2017-22360 Pacific Fishery Management Council, 48063-48064 2017-22359 South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 48065-48066 2017-22362 National Science National Science Foundation NOTICES Antarctic Conservation Act Permits, 48123-48124 2017-22295 2017-22296 Fiscal Year 2016 Service Contract Inventory and Associated Documents, 48124-48125 2017-22300 Nuclear Regulatory Nuclear Regulatory Commission NOTICES Guidance: Instructions for Recording and Reporting Occupational Radiation Dose Data, 48125-48126 2017-22289 Performance Review Boards for Senior Executive Service, 48126-48127 2017-22273 Occupational Safety Health Adm Occupational Safety and Health Administration NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals, 48119-48122 2017-22268 2017-22269 Pipeline Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration RULES Hazardous Materials: Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains, 48006-48007 2017-22281 NOTICES Meetings: Pipeline Safety: Coastal Ecological Unusually Sensitive Areas, 48151-48152 2017-22319 Presidential Documents Presidential Documents PROCLAMATIONS Special Observances: General Pulaski Memorial Day (Proc. 9658), 48189-48192 2017-22546 Securities Securities and Exchange Commission NOTICES Self-Regulatory Organizations; Proposed Rule Changes: MIAX PEARL, LLC, 48140-48144 2017-22264 Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board, 48135-48140 2017-22262 NYSE Arca, Inc., 48127-48135 2017-22263 Small Business Small Business Administration RULES Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program: Lending Criteria, 47958-47959 2017-22385 NOTICES Disaster Declarations: Florida; Amendment 1, 48145 2017-22331 U.S. Virgin Islands; Public Assistance Only, 48144-48145 2017-22332 Secondary Market Program; Changes, 48144 2017-22466 State Department State Department NOTICES Charter Renewals: U.S. Advisory Panel to U.S. Section of North Pacific Anadromous Fish Commission, 48146 2017-22323 Culturally Significant Objects Imported for Exhibition: Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dress from Collection of Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 48145 2017-22322 Meetings: Advisory Committee on Private International Law; Online Dispute Resolution, 48145-48146 2017-22324 Surface Transportation Surface Transportation Board NOTICES Discontinuance of Service Exemptions: Wisconsin Central Ltd.; Oneida and Marinette Counties, WI, 48146-48147 2017-22257 Tennessee Tennessee Valley Authority NOTICES Meetings: Regional Resource Stewardship Council, 48147 2017-22309 Transportation Department Transportation Department See

Federal Aviation Administration

See

Federal Highway Administration

See

Federal Railroad Administration

See

Maritime Administration

See

Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

Treasury Treasury Department See

Community Development Financial Institutions Fund

PROPOSED RULES Second Report to the President on Identifying and Reducing Tax Regulatory Burdens, 48013-48018 2017-22205 NOTICES Meetings: Debt Management Advisory Committee, 48153 2017-21955
Customs U.S. Customs and Border Protection NOTICES Agency Information Collection Activities; Proposals, Submissions, and Approvals: Application for Waiver of Passport and/or Visa, 48109 2017-22337 Documentation Requirements for Articles Entered under Various Special Tariff Treatment Provisions, 48107-48108 2017-22338 Generic Clearance for Collection of Qualitative Feedback on Agency Service Delivery, 48108-48109 2017-22336 Veteran Affairs Veterans Affairs Department PROPOSED RULES Prosthetic and Rehabilitative Items and Services, 48018-48030 2017-22358 NOTICES Employees whose Association with For-Profit Educational Institutions Poses No Detriment to Veterans, 48153-48154 2017-22352 Separate Parts In This Issue Part II Environmental Protection Agency, 48156-48187 2017-21937 Part III Presidential Documents, 48189-48192 2017-22546 Reader Aids

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

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82 198 Monday, October 16, 2017 Rules and Regulations BUREAU OF CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION 12 CFR Part 1024 [Docket No. CFPB-2017-0031] RIN 3170-AA77 Mortgage Servicing Rules Under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) AGENCY:

Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.

ACTION:

Interim final rule with request for public comment.

SUMMARY:

The Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (Bureau) is issuing an interim final rule amending a provision of the Regulation X mortgage servicing rules issued in 2016 relating to the timing for servicers to provide modified written early intervention notices to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. The Bureau requests public comment on this interim final rule.

DATES:

This interim final rule is effective on October 19, 2017. Comments must be received on or before November 15, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments, identified by Docket No. CFPB-2017-0031 or RIN 3170-AA77, by any of the following methods:

Email: [email protected] Include Docket No. CFPB-2017-0031 or RIN 3170-AA77 in the subject line of the email.

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

Mail: Monica Jackson, Office of the Executive Secretary, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552.

Hand Delivery/Courier: Monica Jackson, Office of the Executive Secretary, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552.

Instructions: All submissions should include the agency name and docket number or Regulatory Information Number (RIN) for this rulemaking. Because paper mail in the Washington, DC area and at the Bureau is subject to delay, commenters are encouraged to submit comments electronically. In general, all comments received will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov. In addition, comments will be available for public inspection and copying at 1700 G Street NW., Washington, DC 20552, on official business days between the hours of 10 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. You can make an appointment to inspect the documents by telephoning 202-435-7275.

All comments, including attachments and other supporting materials, will become part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. Sensitive personal information, such as account numbers or Social Security numbers, should not be included. Comments will not be edited to remove any identifying or contact information.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Joel L. Singerman, Counsel; or William R. Corbett or Laura A. Johnson, Senior Counsels, Office of Regulations, at 202-435-7700 or https://reginquiries.consumerfinance.gov/.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Summary of the Interim Final Rule

On August 4, 2016, the Bureau issued the Amendments to the 2013 Mortgage Rules Under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) and the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z) (2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule) amending certain of the Bureau's mortgage servicing rules.1 The Bureau has learned, through its outreach in support of industry's implementation of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, that certain technical aspects of the rule relating to the timing for servicers to provide modified written early intervention notices to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) may create unintended challenges in implementation. To alleviate any unintended challenges and facilitate timely provision of written early intervention notices to these borrowers, the Bureau is issuing this interim final rule to address the provision in Regulation X, which would otherwise become effective October 19, 2017.2

1 81 FR 72160 (Oct. 19, 2016).

2 The Bureau is addressing in a separate proposed rule another disclosure timing provision of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule that would otherwise become effective April 19, 2018.

Among other things, the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule addresses Regulation X's provision regarding early intervention requirements when a borrower has invoked the cease communication right under the FDCPA.3 Under that provision (and with certain exceptions not applicable here), a servicer subject to the FDCPA with respect to that borrower's loan must provide a modified written early intervention notice to that borrower on a periodic basis but is prohibited from doing so more than once during any 180-day period.

3 The provisions of Regulation X discussed herein were amended by the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule but are not effective until October 19, 2017. To simplify review of this document and differentiate between those amendments and this rule, this document generally refers to the 2016 amendments as though they already are in effect.

Based on feedback received through its efforts to support industry implementation of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, the Bureau understands that there is concern among some servicers that this 180-day prohibition in § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), read in conjunction with the early intervention provision's other timing requirements regarding written notices, requires servicers to provide the notice exactly on the 180th day after providing a prior notice. The Bureau did not intend this result and is concerned that the provision imposes too narrow a window for compliance and may provide insufficient guidance as to when and how servicers comply with the timing requirements under certain circumstances. Thus (and as explained in further detail below), the Bureau is issuing this interim final rule to amend § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) to give servicers a 10-day window to provide the modified notice at the end of the 180-day period.

The Bureau believes that the interim final rule provides clearer and more flexible standards than the timing requirements adopted in the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, offering greater certainty for implementation and compliance, without undermining important borrower protections relating to early intervention. The Bureau seeks public comment on this interim final rule.

II. Background A. 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule and Implementation Support

In August 2016, the Bureau issued the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, which amends certain of the Bureau's mortgage servicing rules in Regulations X and Z.4 Most of these rules become effective on October 19, 2017, except that the provisions relating to bankruptcy periodic statements and successors in interest become effective on April 19, 2018. The Bureau has worked to support implementation by providing an updated compliance guide, other implementation aids, a technical corrections final rule,5 policy guidance regarding early compliance,6 and informal guidance in response to regulatory inquiries. Information regarding the Bureau's implementation support initiative and available implementation resources can be found on the Bureau's regulatory implementation Web site at https://www.consumerfinance.gov/policy-compliance/guidance/implementation-guidance/mortserv/. Based on its ongoing outreach, the Bureau believes that industry has made substantial implementation progress regarding the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule. However, as discussed herein, the Bureau believes that a limited disclosure timing provision under Regulation X from the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule may pose unintended implementation challenges and is appropriate to address in an interim final rule before it goes into effect.

4 81 FR 72160 (Oct. 19, 2016). The amendments cover nine major topics and focus primarily on clarifying, revising, or amending provisions regarding force-placed insurance notices, policies and procedures, early intervention, and loss mitigation requirements under Regulation X's servicing provisions; and prompt crediting and periodic statement requirements under Regulation Z's servicing provisions. The amendments also address proper compliance regarding certain servicing requirements when a person is a potential or confirmed successor in interest, is a debtor in bankruptcy, or sends a cease communication request under the FDCPA.

5 Amendments to the 2013 Mortgage Rules Under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) and the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z); Correction, 82 FR 30947 (July 5, 2017).

6 Policy Guidance on Supervisory and Enforcement Priorities Regarding Early Compliance With the 2016 Amendments to the 2013 Mortgage Rules Under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) and the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z), 82 FR 29713 (June 30, 2017).

B. Purpose and Scope of Interim Final Rule

As a result of feedback and questions received from servicers, the Bureau has decided to issue an interim final rule amending Regulation X relating to the timing for servicers to provide modified written early intervention notices to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights under the FDCPA. The Bureau believes this interim final rule provides clearer and more flexible standards than the timing requirements adopted in the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, offering greater certainty for implementation and compliance, while also not undermining borrower protections.

III. Legal Authority

The Bureau is issuing this interim final rule pursuant to its authority under RESPA and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank Act),7 including the authorities discussed below. This interim final rule amends a provision previously adopted by the Bureau in the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule. In doing so, the Bureau relied on one or more of the authorities discussed below, as well as other authority. The Bureau is issuing this interim final rule in reliance on the same authority and for the same reasons relied on in adopting the relevant provisions of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, as discussed in detail in the Legal Authority and Section-by-Section Analysis parts of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule.

7 Public Law 111-203, 1245 Stat. 11376 (2010).

A. RESPA

Section 19(a) of RESPA, 12 U.S.C. 2617(a), authorizes the Bureau to prescribe such rules and regulations, to make such interpretations, and to grant such reasonable exemptions for classes of transactions, as may be necessary to achieve the purposes of RESPA, which include its consumer protection purposes. In addition, section 6(j)(3) of RESPA, 12 U.S.C. 2605(j)(3), authorizes the Bureau to establish any requirements necessary to carry out section 6 of RESPA, and section 6(k)(1)(E) of RESPA, 12 U.S.C. 2605(k)(1)(E), authorizes the Bureau to prescribe regulations that are appropriate to carry out RESPA's consumer protection purposes. The amendments or clarifications to Regulation X in the interim final rule are intended to achieve some or all these purposes.

B. The Dodd-Frank Act

Section 1022(b)(1) of the Dodd-Frank Act, 12 U.S.C. 5512(b)(1), authorizes the Bureau to prescribe rules “as may be necessary or appropriate to enable the Bureau to administer and carry out the purposes and objectives of the Federal consumer financial laws, and to prevent evasions thereof.” RESPA and title X of the Dodd-Frank Act are Federal consumer financial laws.

Section 1032(a) of the Dodd-Frank Act, 12 U.S.C. 5532(a), provides that the Bureau “may prescribe rules to ensure that the features of any consumer financial product or service, both initially and over the term of the product or service, are fully, accurately, and effectively disclosed to consumers in a manner that permits consumers to understand the costs, benefits, and risks associated with the product or service, in light of the facts and circumstances.” The authority granted to the Bureau in section 1032(a) of the Dodd-Frank Act is broad and empowers the Bureau to prescribe rules regarding the disclosure of the “features” of consumer financial products and services generally. Accordingly, the Bureau may prescribe rules containing disclosure requirements even if other Federal consumer financial laws do not specifically require disclosure of such features.

Section 1032(c) of the Dodd-Frank Act, 12 U.S.C. 5532(c), provides that, in prescribing rules pursuant to section 1032 of the Dodd-Frank Act, the Bureau “shall consider available evidence about consumer awareness, understanding of, and responses to disclosures or communications about the risks, costs, and benefits of consumer financial products or services.” Accordingly, in issuing the interim final rule to amend provisions authorized under section 1032(a) of the Dodd-Frank Act, the Bureau has considered available studies, reports, and other evidence about consumer awareness, understanding of, and responses to disclosures or communications about the risks, costs, and benefits of consumer financial products or services.

IV. Administrative Procedure Act

To the extent that notice and comment would otherwise be required, the Bureau finds that there is good cause to publish this interim final rule without notice and comment and for the rule to be effective less than 30 days after publication. See 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(B), (d)(3). As explained elsewhere in this rule, the Bureau has heard concerns from servicers that the 180-day prohibition in current § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) requires them to provide the modified early intervention notice to delinquent borrowers who have invoked their right to cease communication under the FDCPA exactly on the 180th day after providing a prior notice. The Bureau did not intend this result and is concerned that current § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) imposes too narrow a window for compliance and could cause legal risk for servicers, particularly when the 180th day falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or public holiday. This interim final rule amends § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) to give servicers a 10-day window to provide the modified notice at the end of the 180-day period. The Bureau believes that this amendment will offer greater certainty for implementation and compliance, while also not undermining borrower protections. The Bureau finds that it would be impracticable to provide notice and comment before finalizing this rule because § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) would otherwise become effective on October 19, 2017, and could cause unintended challenges in the implementation of the notice requirement. For similar reasons, the Bureau finds that it is impracticable to provide a 30-day period between publication of this rule and its effective date. The Bureau is requesting comment on this rule. Based on any comments received (and mindful of the need to avoid market disruption), the Bureau will consider whether to revisit this rule.

V. Section-by-Section Analysis A. Regulation X Section 1024.39 Early Intervention Requirements for Certain Borrowers 39(d) Fair Debt Collection Practices Act—Partial Exemption 39(d)(3).

In this interim final rule, the Bureau is amending § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) to specify in more detail when a servicer must provide the modified written early intervention notice, as required by § 1024.39(b) and (d), at the end of the 180-day period after the servicer provided a prior written notice. In general, § 1024.39(d) provides a partial exemption from the early intervention requirements for servicers that are subject to the FDCPA with respect to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights pursuant to section 805(c) of the FDCPA.8 Section 1024.39(d)(3) requires servicers to provide a modified written early intervention notice to those borrowers under certain circumstances, but § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) prohibits a servicer from providing the modified notice more than once during any 180-day period. As revised under this interim final rule, § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) gives servicers a 10-day window to provide the required notices at the end of the 180-day period. In particular, revised § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) retains the 180-day prohibition and also specifies: (1) If a borrower is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, and (2) if a borrower is less than 45 days delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 45 days after the payment due date for which the borrower remains delinquent or 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, whichever is later.

8 This section-by-section analysis discusses § 1024.39(d) generally in terms of a borrower's cease communication notification and its effect on a servicer's obligations under the early intervention requirements, but the provision applies equally to a borrower's notice to the servicer that the borrower refuses to pay a debt. See FDCPA section 805(c) (“If a consumer notifies a debt collector in writing that the consumer refuses to pay a debt or that the consumer wishes the debt collector to cease further communication with the consumer, the debt collector shall not communicate further with the consumer with respect to such debt . . . .”).

Section 1024.39(b) generally requires that a servicer provide a written early intervention notice prior to the 45th day of delinquency, and again no later than 45 days after each payment due date so long as the borrower remains delinquent. Section 1024.39(b) further provides that a servicer is not required to provide a notice more than once in any 180-day period, but also that a servicer must provide the written notice no more than 180 days after the servicer has previously provided the notice if the borrower remains delinquent and is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of the 180-day period.

Among other things, § 1024.39(d) modifies the timing requirements for providing the written notice required by § 1024.39(b) when a borrower has invoked the cease communication right under the FDCPA. Under § 1024.39(d)(2), a servicer subject to the FDCPA with respect to that borrower's loan is exempt from the written notice requirements of § 1024.39(b), but only if no loss mitigation option is available, or while any borrower on that mortgage loan is a debtor in bankruptcy. If neither of those conditions is met, § 1024.39(d)(3) provides that the servicer must comply with the written notice requirements of § 1024.39(b), as modified by § 1024.39(d)(3)(i) through (iii).9 The relevant provision for purposes of this interim final rule is § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), which prohibits a servicer from providing the written notice more than once during any 180-day period. In the preamble to the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, the Bureau noted that this 180-day prohibition reduces the risk that the modified written early intervention notice will be used to undermine a borrower's cease communication right under FDCPA section 805(c).

9 Section 1024.39(d)(3)(i) requires that the notice include a statement that the servicer may or intends to invoke its specified remedy of foreclosure and states that Model clause MS-4(D) in appendix MS-4 to Regulation X may be used to comply with this requirement. Section 1024.39(d)(3)(ii) provides that the notice may not contain a request for payment.

Concurrently with the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, the Bureau issued an interpretive rule constituting an advisory opinion under FDCPA section 813(e), 15 U.S.C. 1692k(e), that, in part, interprets the FDCPA cease communication provisions in relation to the written early intervention requirements in Regulation X.10 Specifically, the interpretive rule provides a safe harbor from liability under FDCPA section 805(c) where a servicer that is a debt collector with respect to a mortgage loan is required by § 1024.39(d)(3) to provide a modified written early intervention notice to a borrower who has invoked the cease communication right.

10See Bureau of Consumer Fin. Prot., Official Bureau Interpretations: Safe Harbors from Liability under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act for Certain Actions Taken in Compliance with Mortgage Servicing Rules under the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) and the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z), 81 FR 71977 (Oct. 19, 2016).

After issuing the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule and the interpretive rule, the Bureau received several inquiries about how § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) modifies § 1024.39(b)'s timing requirements. Section 1024.39(b) does not require a notice more than once in a 180-day period but, except as otherwise provided in § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), permits more frequent provision of the written notices. It also provides that, if a borrower is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 180 days after the provision of the prior written notice. However, with regard to a loan for which a borrower has invoked the cease communication right as described above, § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) prohibits a servicer from providing the notice more than once in any 180-day period.

The Bureau is concerned that, as adopted by the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) imposes too narrow a window for compliance and could provide insufficient guidance as to when and how servicers comply with the timing requirements under certain circumstances. The 180-day prohibition in § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), read in conjunction with § 1024.39(b), provides only one day for a servicer to provide a subsequent written notice.11 Therefore, where a borrower that has invoked the cease communication right is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of the 180-day period after the servicer provided a prior written notice, a servicer would have to provide the next notice on the 180th calendar day after the prior notice, whether or not this day falls on a Saturday, Sunday, or public holiday. The Bureau narrowly tailored the timing requirements in § 1024.39(d) to prevent a servicer subject to the FDCPA from sending frequent, repeated notices that may undermine a borrower's cease communication right under section 805(c) of the FDCPA. The Bureau did not, however, intend for servicers subject to § 1024.39(d)(3) to have a one-day window to provide a subsequent written early intervention notice to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights. Thus, the Bureau is amending § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii).

11 The Bureau also understands that some stakeholders instead may be interpreting § 1024.39(b) and (d)(3)(iii) together as permitting a servicer to provide the subsequent written notice required by § 1024.39(b) sometime after the 180th day but before the end of the next 180-day period (e.g., by the 360th day). The Bureau does not believe such a reading of § 1024.39(b) and (d)(3)(iii) together is tenable and is concerned that, if servicers act in accordance, borrowers would be deprived of timely receiving important loss mitigation information.

As amended § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) retains the general 180-day prohibition but also specifies that, if a borrower is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice. If a borrower is less than 45 days delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 45 days after the payment due date for which the borrower remains delinquent or 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, whichever is later. In effect, the interim final rule provides servicers a 10-day window to provide any required notices at the end of the 180-day period. The Bureau believes that a 10-day window at the end of the 180-day period affords servicers sufficient time to provide the notice while also ensuring that servicers provide the subsequent notice in a timely way, maximizing a borrower's opportunities to pursue loss mitigation and avoid further delinquency.

The Bureau seeks comment on whether the interim final rule permits servicers to timely provide the notice at the end of the 180-day period. The Bureau also seeks comment on whether the interim final rule adequately protects consumers who have invoked their cease communication rights while affording them timely access to information about loss mitigation.

VI. Effective Date

Section 1024.39(d), as amended by the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, becomes effective October 19, 2017. Thus, this interim final rule, which further amends § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), also becomes effective October 19, 2017.

VII. Dodd-Frank Act Section 1022(b) Analysis

In developing this interim final rule, the Bureau has considered the potential benefits, costs, and impacts as required by section 1022(b)(2) of the Dodd-Frank Act. Specifically, section 1022(b)(2) calls for the Bureau to consider the potential benefits and costs of a regulation to consumers and covered persons, including the potential reduction of consumer access to consumer financial products or services, the impact on depository institutions and credit unions with $10 billion or less in total assets as described in section 1026 of the Dodd-Frank Act, and the impact on consumers in rural areas. In addition, 12 U.S.C. 5512(b)(2)(B) directs the Bureau to consult, before and during the rulemaking, with appropriate prudential regulators or other Federal agencies, regarding consistency with the objectives those agencies administer. The Bureau consulted, or offered to consult with, the prudential regulators, the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the HUD Office of Inspector General, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Veterans Affairs, including regarding consistency with any prudential, market, or systemic objectives administered by these agencies.

The Bureau previously considered the benefits, costs, and impacts of the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule's major provisions.12 The baseline 13 for this discussion is the mortgage servicing market as it would exist “but for” this interim final rule; that is, the Bureau considers the benefits, costs, and impacts of this interim final rule on consumers and covered persons relative to the baseline established by the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule.

12 81 FR 72160, 72351 (Oct. 19, 2016).

13 The Bureau has discretion in any rulemaking to choose an appropriate scope of analysis with respect to potential benefits, costs, and impacts and an appropriate baseline.

In considering the relevant potential benefits, costs, and impacts of this interim final rule, the Bureau has used feedback received to date and has applied its knowledge and expertise concerning consumer financial markets. The discussion below of these potential costs, benefits, and impacts is qualitative, reflecting both the specialized nature of the amendments and the fact that the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule, which establishes the baseline for the Bureau's analysis, is not yet in effect. The Bureau requests comment on this discussion generally as well as the submission of data or other information that could inform the Bureau's consideration of the potential benefits, costs, and impacts of the interim final rule.

The interim final rule's provisions generally would decrease burden incurred by industry participants by modifying the timing requirements for certain disclosures required under the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule. As is described in more detail below, the Bureau does not believe that these changes would have a significant enough impact on consumers or covered persons to affect consumer access to consumer financial products and services.

Timing of written early intervention notice for borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights under the FDCPA. The interim final rule revises § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) to specify when a servicer must provide the modified written early intervention notice, as required by § 1024.39(b) and (d), at the end of the 180-day period after the servicer provided a prior written notice. Section 1024.39(b) requires that a servicer must provide a written early intervention notice to certain borrowers no more than 180 days after the servicer previously provided the notice. Section 1024.39(d) generally provides that servicers that are subject to the FDCPA with respect to borrowers who have invoked their cease communication rights pursuant to section 805(c) of the FDCPA must provide a modified written early intervention notice to those borrowers under certain circumstances. As originally adopted § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) would have provided that a servicer may not provide the modified notice more than once during any 180-day period. Currently, the 180-day prohibition in § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii), read in conjunction with § 1024.39(b), provides only one day for a servicer to provide a subsequent written notice.

Under the interim final rule, revised § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) gives servicers a 10-day window to provide the required notices at the end of the 180-day period.14 This provision will benefit covered persons by modifying the timing requirements for the early intervention notice and providing more than a one-day window. This will benefit servicers by providing additional flexibility in the timing for providing these notices.

14 In particular, revised § 1024.39(d)(3)(iii) would retain the 180-day prohibition but would also specify: (1) If a borrower is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, and (2) if a borrower is less than 45 days delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 45 days after the payment due date for which the borrower remains delinquent or 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, whichever is later.

The interim final rule may have the effect of delaying the date on which some borrowers receive written early intervention information about loss mitigation options. However, this delay in no case exceeds 10 days, and will affect only a limited subset of delinquent borrowers: Those who have invoked their FDCPA cease communication rights and are 45 days or more delinquent at the end of the 180-day period following provision of a prior written early intervention notice. Given that servicers may not be subject to the FDCPA with respect to many of the loans they service and that many borrowers will not choose to invoke the FDCPA's cease communication rights, the Bureau expects that the number of affected borrowers is small.15 Given that the delay under the interim final rule is limited and would likely apply to only a small subset of borrowers, the Bureau does not anticipate that the overall effect on consumers will be significant.

15 Borrowers generally have FDCPA protections only with respect to debt collectors. A servicer is not considered a debt collector for purposes of the FDCPA based on acquiring servicing rights to a mortgage loan before the mortgage loan is in default. Therefore, if a servicer obtains servicing rights to a mortgage loan and the borrower subsequently goes into default on that mortgage loan, the servicer generally is not covered by the FDCPA with respect to that mortgage loan based on its servicing of that loan.

Potential specific impacts of the interim final rule. The Bureau believes that a large fraction of depository institutions and credit unions with $10 billion or less in total assets that are engaged in servicing mortgage loans qualify as “small servicers” for purposes of the mortgage servicing rules because they service 5,000 or fewer loans, all of which they or an affiliate own or originated. Small servicers are not subject to Regulation X § 1024.39, and so are not affected by the amendments in this interim final rule.

With respect to servicers that are not small servicers as defined in § 1026.41(e)(4), the Bureau believes that the consideration of benefits and costs of covered persons presented above provides a largely accurate analysis of the impacts of the final rule on depository institutions and credit unions with $10 billion or less in total assets that are engaged in servicing mortgage loans.

The Bureau has no reason to believe that the additional timing flexibility offered to covered persons by this interim final rule would differentially impact consumers in rural areas. The Bureau requests comment regarding the impact of the amended provisions on consumers in rural areas and how those impacts may differ from those experienced by consumers generally.

VIII. Regulatory Flexibility Act Analysis

Because no notice of proposed rulemaking is required, the Regulatory Flexibility Act does not require an initial or final regulatory flexibility analysis.16

16 5 U.S.C. 603(a), 604(a).

IX. Paperwork Reduction Act

Under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA),17 Federal agencies are generally required to seek Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approval for information collection requirements prior to implementation. The collections of information related to the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule have been reviewed and approved by OMB previously in accordance with the PRA and assigned OMB Control Numbers 3170-0016 (Regulation X) and 3170-0015 (Regulation Z). Under the PRA, the Bureau may not conduct or sponsor and, notwithstanding any other provision of law, a person is not required to respond to an information collection unless the information collection displays a valid control number assigned by OMB.

17 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.

The Bureau has determined that the interim final rule will provide firms with additional flexibility and clarity with respect to what must be disclosed under the 2016 Mortgage Servicing Final Rule; therefore, it will have only minimal impact on the industry-wide aggregate PRA burden relative to the baseline. The Bureau welcomes comments on this determination or any other aspects of this interim final rule for purposes of the PRA. Comments should be submitted to the Bureau as instructed in the ADDRESSES part of this document and to the attention of the Paperwork Reduction Act Officer. All comments will become a matter of public record.

List of Subjects in 12 CFR Part 1024

Condominiums, Consumer protection, Housing, Insurance, Mortgages, Mortgagees, Mortgage servicing, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

Authority and Issuance

For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau amends 12 CFR part 1024 as follows:

PART 1024—REAL ESTATE SETTLEMENT PROCEDURES ACT (REGULATION X) 1. The authority citation for part 1024 continues to read as follows: Authority:

12 U.S.C. 2603-2605, 2607, 2609, 2617, 5512, 5532, 5581.

Subpart C—Mortgage Servicing 2. Amend § 1024.39 by revising paragraph (d)(3)(iii) to read as follows:
§ 1024.39 Early intervention requirements for certain borrowers.

(d) * * *

(3) * * *

(iii) A servicer is prohibited from providing the written notice more than once during any 180-day period. If a borrower is 45 days or more delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice. If a borrower is less than 45 days delinquent at the end of any 180-day period after the servicer has provided the written notice, a servicer must provide the written notice again no later than 45 days after the payment due date for which the borrower remains delinquent or 190 days after the provision of the prior written notice, whichever is later.

Dated: October 2, 2017. Richard Cordray, Director, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection.
[FR Doc. 2017-21912 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-AM-P
SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION 13 CFR Part 120 Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program; Modification of Lending Criteria AGENCY:

U.S. Small Business Administration.

ACTION:

Notification of Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program and impact on regulatory provision.

SUMMARY:

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announces SBA's Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program (Express Bridge Pilot), as described in this document, and its impact on an Agency regulation relating to loan underwriting for loans made under the Express Bridge Pilot. This pilot will provide expedited guaranteed bridge loan financing for disaster-related purposes to small businesses located in communities impacted by a Presidentially-declared disaster, while those small businesses apply for and await long-term financing (including through SBA's direct disaster loan program, if eligible). The modification of the lending criteria will minimize the burden on businesses applying for loans through the Express Bridge Pilot and provide an incentive for SBA Express lenders to participate in the pilot.

DATES:

The Express Bridge Pilot, including the modification of lending criteria under 13 CFR 120.150, will be available from October 16, 2017, through September 30, 2020.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Dianna Seaborn, Director, Office of Financial Assistance, U.S. Small Business Administration, 409 Third Street SW., Washington, DC 20416; Telephone (202) 205-3645; email address: [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Pursuant to its authority under the Small Business Act, SBA provides assistance to small businesses located in the communities affected by Presidentially-declared disasters. The Agency has announced an initiative called the Express Bridge Pilot, which is designed to supplement the Agency's disaster response capabilities. The Express Bridge Pilot will authorize the Agency's 7(a) Lenders with SBA Express lending authority to deliver expedited SBA-guaranteed financing on an emergency basis for disaster-related purposes to small businesses located in these communities while the businesses apply for and await long-term financing (including through SBA's direct disaster loan program, if eligible).

The Express Bridge Pilot will apply the policies and procedures in place for the Agency's SBA Express program, except as outlined in this document, and include the following:

(1) The maximum loan amount under the pilot is $25,000 and the loans will carry a 50 percent guaranty from the Agency.

(2) Express Bridge Pilot loans in a particular disaster area can only be made by SBA Express lenders that were participants in the SBA Express program as of the date of the applicable disaster.

(3) Eligible small businesses are those that were located, as of the date of the applicable disaster, in the counties that have been Presidentially-declared as disaster areas, plus any contiguous counties.

(4) SBA Express lenders may make loans under the Express Bridge Pilot only to eligible small businesses that had an existing banking relationship with the SBA Express lender as of the date of the applicable disaster. A relationship with any of the SBA Express lender's affiliates will not satisfy this requirement.

(5) SBA Express lenders must certify to SBA, for each Express Bridge Pilot loan, that the loan funds will be used to support the survival and/or reopening of the small business within the affected counties.

(6) The maximum maturity for an Express Bridge Pilot loan is seven years. The SBA Express lender may require a borrower to pay down or pay off the Express Bridge Pilot loan if the borrower is approved for long-term disaster financing (including an SBA direct disaster loan) that allows proceeds to be used for Express Bridge Pilot loan reimbursement.

(7) Express Bridge Pilot loans cannot be sold in SBA's secondary market. Express Bridge Pilot loans are intended to be interim loans, thus SBA has determined pursuant to 13 CFR 120.612(a)(3) that the sale of such loans in SBA's secondary market would not be conducive to the successful operation of the secondary market program.

(8) Loans under the Express Bridge Pilot in a particular disaster area can only be made up to six months after the date of the applicable Presidential disaster declaration.

(9) The Express Bridge Pilot will be available for use starting October 16, 2017, and will expire on September 30, 2020. Express Bridge Pilot loans must be approved on or before such date, as evidenced by the issuance of an SBA loan number.

To maximize the effectiveness of the Express Bridge Pilot, SBA is modifying an Agency regulation (13 CFR 120.150) that applies to loans made in the 7(a) Business Loan Program. (SBA uses the term “modify” as contemplated under 13 CFR 120.3.) This modification will also minimize the burdens on the businesses applying for loans through the Express Bridge Pilot and expand the opportunities for SBA Express lenders to participate in the pilot.

Under § 120.150 of SBA's regulations, a small business applicant must be creditworthy and loans must be so sound as to reasonably assure repayment. In making this determination, character, reputation, credit history of the applicant and guarantors, past earnings, projected cash flow, and future prospects, among other things, must be considered. Currently, SBA Express lenders are authorized to make the credit decision using credit analysis processes and procedures (which may include credit scoring) that are consistent with those used for their similarly-sized non-SBA guaranteed commercial loans.

In order to streamline the loan underwriting process for the Express Bridge Pilot, SBA is modifying the requirements of 13 CFR 120.150 to allow SBA Express lenders to underwrite Express Bridge Pilot loans by considering only the following:

(1) A minimum acceptable credit score of 130 for the applicant issued by E-Tran upon submission of the loan application for screening;

(2) a personal credit score for each guarantor; and

(3) Lender must obtain a signed IRS Form 4506-T and an IRS tax transcript. For businesses in operation prior to the disaster but not long enough to have been required to file a tax return, Lender must provide an alternative to verify existence of the business.

The screening credit score is a FICO® Small Business Scoring ServiceSM Score. SBA may adjust the minimum acceptable credit score up or down from time to time during the pilot, and will post any such adjusted score on its Web site at www.sba.gov/for-lenders.

The modification of this regulation will allow SBA Express lenders to expedite the processing of these small guaranteed loans in order to provide immediate cash to assist the small business with rebuilding and continuing or restarting its operations while awaiting long-term disaster financing. Because an Express Bridge Pilot loan applicant must have had an existing banking relationship with the SBA Express lender, SBA expects this will help mitigate the risk associated with the modification of 13 CFR 120.150. SBA Express lenders are cautioned that the provisions of 13 CFR 120.140 (“What ethical requirements apply to participants?”) continue to apply to the Express Bridge Pilot.

SBA's modification of 13 CFR 120.150 is authorized by 13 CFR 120.3 of its regulations, which provides that the SBA Administrator may suspend, modify or waive rules for a limited period of time to test new programs or ideas. This modification applies only to those loans made under the Express Bridge Pilot and will last only for the duration of the pilot, which expires September 30, 2020. As part of the Express Bridge Pilot, this modification applies only to those small businesses that were located, as of the date of the applicable disaster, in counties that have been Presidentially-declared as disaster areas, plus any contiguous counties. A listing of Presidentially-declared disaster declarations, including primary and contiguous counties can be located at www.sba.gov/disaster.

Not more than ten percent of the total number of 7(a) loans guaranteed by SBA in any fiscal year may be made under the Express Bridge Pilot. 15 U.S.C. 636(a)(25). While SBA does not expect the number of Express Bridge Pilot loans to reach that limit, SBA will provide public notice of the need to suspend lending under the pilot for the remainder of the fiscal year if SBA determines that the number of pilot loans is approaching the limit.

SBA will be using the following criteria to evaluate the Express Bridge Pilot to determine how well it is achieving its objectives and other aspects of performance: (1) The measurable objectives to be achieved through the Express Bridge Pilot, including the number of small business concerns served, the percentage of Express Bridge Pilot loans made that were paid off or paid down using lower fixed rate disaster loans versus those that are held to term, and the default rate on the Express Bridge Pilot loans compared to regular SBA Express loans of similar size in the 7(a) portfolio; and (2) the costs and standards of performance which, in order to be acceptable, must not impact the subsidy model for the 7(a) Loan Program. The following method for data collection will be used: All loans will be entered directly using E-Tran or SBA One, which track eligibility by the county in which the small business is located, and which will facilitate tracking of performance on these loans.

Authority:

15 U.S.C. 636(a)(25); 13 CFR 120.3.

Dated: October 6, 2017. Linda E. McMahon, Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2017-22385 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8025-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0458; Airspace Docket No. 17-ASW-8] Amendment of Class E Airspace; Canadian, TX; and Wheeler, TX AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action amends Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hemphill County Airport, Canadian, TX, and Wheeler Municipal Airport, Wheeler, TX. This action is due to the decommissioning of the Sayre co-located VHF omnidirectional range and tactical air navigation system (VORTAC) facility, which provided navigation guidance for the instrument procedures to these airports. The VORTAC is being decommissioned as part of the VHF omnidirectional range (VOR) Minimum Operational Network (MON) Program. Additionally, the geographic coordinates of the airports are being adjusted to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, February 1, 2018. 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 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

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

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it amends Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hemphill County Airport, Canadian, TX, and Wheeler Municipal Airport, Wheeler, TX, to support IFR operations at these airports.

History

On June 20, 2017, the FAA published in the Federal Register (82 FR 28033) Docket No. FAA-2017-0458, a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hemphill County Airport, Canadian, TX, and Wheeler Municipal Airport, Wheeler, TX, to enhance the safety and management of IFR operations at these airports. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received.

Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.11B, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, 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.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

This document amends FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11B lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

The Rule

This amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 modifies Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface to:

Within a 6.5-mile radius (reduced from a 6.8-mile radius) of Hemphill County Airport with an extension 1 mile either side of the 224° bearing from the airport from the 6.5-mile radius to 6.6 miles south of the airport, and updates the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database; and

Within a 6.3-mile radius (reduced from a 6.4-mile radius) of Wheeler Municipal Airport and updates the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning of the Sayre VORTAC as part of the VOR MON Program and to bring the airspace in compliance with FAA Order 7400.2L, Procedures for Handling Airspace Matters. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of IFR operations at these airports.

Except for an editorial change removing “JO” where an FAA Order is cited throughout the document, this rule is the same as proposed in the NPRM.

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

Environmental Review

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

Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

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

§ 71.1 [Amended]
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ASW TX E5 Canadian, TX [Amended] Canadian, Hemphill County Airport, TX (Lat. 35°53′42″ N., long. 100°24′14″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius of Hemphill County Airport, and within 1 mile either side of the 224° bearing from the airport extending from the 6.5-mile radius to 6.6 miles south of the airport.

ASW TX E5 Wheeler, TX [Amended] Wheeler Municipal Airport, TX (Lat. 35°27′04″ N., long. 100°12′00″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.3-mile radius of Wheeler Municipal Airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on October 5, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-22232 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2016-9546; Airspace Docket No. 16-AGL-32] Establishment of Class E Airspace; Onida, SD AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action establishes Class E airspace at Onida, SD. Controlled airspace is necessary to accommodate new special instrument approach procedures developed at Onida Municipal Airport, for the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, December 7, 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 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

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

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Rebecca Shelby, Federal Aviation Administration, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5857.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it establishes controlled airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Onida Municipal Airport, Onida, SD, to support standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport.

History

The FAA published in the Federal Register (82 FR 37369, August 10, 2017) Docket No. FAA-2016-9546 a notice of proposed rulemaking to establish Class E Airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Onida, Municipal Airport, Onida, SD. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received.

Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.11B dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, 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.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

This document amends FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11B lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

The Rule

This amendment to title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 establishes Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.4-mile radius of Onida Municipal Airport, Onida, SD, to accommodate new special instrument approach procedures. Controlled airspace is needed for the safety and management of IFR operations at the airport.

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, does not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

Environmental Review

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

List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

Adoption of 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 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. AGL SD E5 Onida, SD [New] Onida Municipal Airport, SD (Lat. 44°42′02″ N., long. 100°06′05″ W.)

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

Issued in Fort Worth, TX, on October 5, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-22238 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0175; Airspace Docket No. 17-ACE-2] Amendment of Class E Airspace; Hebron, NE AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action modifies Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hebron Municipal Airport, Hebron, NE. This action is necessary due to the decommissioning of the Hebron non-directional radio beacon (NDB), and cancellation of the NDB approach. This action enhances the safety and management of standard instrument approach procedures for instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, December 7, 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 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

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

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Rebecca Shelby, Federal Aviation Administration, Support Specialist, Operations Support Group, Central Service Center, 10101 Hillwood Parkway, Fort Worth, TX 76177; telephone (817) 222-5857.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Authority for This Rulemaking

The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it amends Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hebron Municipal Airport, Hebron, NE, to support standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport.

History

The FAA published in the Federal Register (82 FR 18593, April 20, 2017) Docket No. FAA-2017-0175 a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Hebron Municipal Airport, Hebron, NE. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received.

Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 respectively of FAA Order 7400.11B, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, 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.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

This document amends FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11B lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

The Rule

This amendment to Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 modifies Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet or more above the surface within a 6.3-mile radius of Hebron Municipal Airport, Hebron, NE.

Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning and cancellation of the Hebron NDB, and NDB approaches. This action enhances the safety and management of the standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at the airport.

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, will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the criteria of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F, “Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures,” paragraph 5-6.5.a. This airspace action is not expected to cause any potentially significant environmental impacts, and 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).

Adoption of the Amendment

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

PART 7—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 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ACE NE E5 Hebron, NE [Amended] Hebron Municipal Airport, NE (Lat. 40°09′08″ N., long. 97°35′13″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.3-mile radius of Hebron Municipal Airport.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on October 5, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-22236 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0536; Airspace Docket No. 17-ACE-10] Amendment of Class E Airspace; Clarinda, IA AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action modifies Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Schenck Field, Clarinda, IA. This action is required due to the decommissioning of the Clarinda non-directional radio beacon (NDB) and the cancellation of the associated instrument approach procedures. This action enhances the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at the airport.

DATES:

Effective 0901 UTC, February 1, 2018. 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 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to https://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

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

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Authority for This Rulemaking

The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it amends Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Schenck Field, Clarinda, IA, to support instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at this airport.

History

On July 21, 2017, the FAA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in the Federal Register (82 FR 33834, Docket No. FAA-2017-0536) to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Schenck Field, Clarinda, IA. Interested parties were invited to participate in this rulemaking effort by submitting written comments on the proposal to the FAA. No comments were received.

Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.11B, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, 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.

Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

This document amends FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11B lists Class A, B, C, D, and E airspace areas, air traffic service routes, and reporting points.

The Rule

This amendment to Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 71 modifies Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Schenck Field, Clarinda, IA, by removing the Clarinda NDB from the legal description; removing the extension south of the airport; and updating the geographic coordinates of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to the decommissioning of the Clarinda NDB and cancellation of the associated instrument approach procedures at this airport. Controlled airspace is necessary for safety and the management of IFR operations at the airport.

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

Environmental Review

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

Lists of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

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

§ 71.1 [Amended]
2. The incorporation by reference in 14 CFR 71.1 of FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ACE IA E5 Clarinda, IA [Amended] Clarinda, Schenck Field, IA (Lat. 40°43′20″ N., long. 95°01′36″ W.)

That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.5-mile radius of Schenck Field.

Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on October 5, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
[FR Doc. 2017-22234 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 73 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0886; Airspace Docket No. 16-ASO-11] Amendment of Restricted Areas R-3004A and R-3004B and Establishment of R-3004C; Fort Gordon, GA Republication Editorial Note:

Rule document 2017-20435 was originally published on pages 44513 through 44514 in the issue of Monday, September 25, 2017. In that publication, on page 44514, in the forty-ninth line of the first column and the thirty-fifth line of the second column, the number 1 was inadvertently deleted from the text. The corrected document is published here in its entirety.

AGENCY:

Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

This action modifies the restricted areas at Fort Gordon, GA to further subdivide the vertical limits of the airspace. The designated altitudes for R-3004A and R-3004B are realigned and a new subarea, designated R-3004C, is established above R-3004B. The FAA is taking this action to allow for more efficient use of the airspace during periods when military activities only require restricted airspace below 3,500 feet MSL. The modifications are fully contained within the existing lateral and vertical boundaries of the restricted airspace.

DATES:

Effective date: 0901 UTC, December 7, 2017.

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 since it vertically subdivides the restricted airspace at Fort Gordon, GA, into three sections to enable more efficient use of airspace.

Background

The restricted airspace at Fort Gordon, GA consists of R-3004A, extending from the surface to 7,000 feet MSL; and R-3004B, extending from 7,001 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL. The time of designation for both areas is as activated by NOTAM 24 hours in advance.

A FAA review of the utilization of the airspace revealed that most activities being conducted only require restricted airspace below 3,500 feet MSL. However, when R-3004A was activated, restrictions were in effect up to 7,000 feet MSL.

While lateral boundaries of the restricted airspace remain the same as currently charted and the overall vertical limits of the restricted airspace are unchanged, in order to provide for more efficient use of airspace, the FAA and the using agency agreed to further subdivide the restricted airspace vertically. The FAA is realigning the designated altitudes for R-3004A and R-3004B and establishing R-3004C as a third subdivision. The new configuration enables activation of restricted airspace to the lower altitude required for the majority of the using agency's training needs while maintaining the ability to activate additional restricted airspace for missions that require higher altitudes.

The designated altitudes for R-3004A are amended to read “surface to but not including 3,500 feet MSL” (decreased from 7,000 feet MSL). The designated altitudes for R-3004B are amended to read “3,500 feet MSL to but not including 7,000 feet MSL,” instead of the current “7,001 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL.” This amendment also established a third subdivision, designated R-3004C, which extends from 7,000 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL. These changes accommodate the using agency's requirements while releasing unneeded restricted airspace for access by other users.

In addition, the aircraft activity limitations on use of the areas are amended to clarify the limitations in effect during the annual Masters Golf Tournament.

These changes enhance the efficient use of the National Airspace System by providing for activation of the minimum amount of restricted airspace needed for the specific mission being conducted resulting in the release of unneeded restricted airspace for access by other users.

The Rule

This rule amends Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) part 73 by further dividing the current restricted airspace at Fort Gordon, GA, into three subareas instead of two. The designated altitudes for R-3004A are amended from the current “surface to 7,000 feet MSL,” to “surface to but not including 3,500 feet MSL.” The designated altitudes for R-3004B are amended from the current “7,001 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL” to “3,500 feet MSL to but not including 7,000 feet MSL.” A new third subdivision, designated R-3004C, is established and extends from 7,000 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL.”

Additionally, the terms and conditions listed in the restricted area legal descriptions for aircraft activities in the restricted areas are revised, in part. Specifically, in order to clarify aircraft operations during the annual Masters Golf tournament, the text of item number 1 is changed from “1. Aircraft activities may not be conducted on weekends, National holidays, or the entire week of the Masters Golf Tournament” to: “1. Aircraft activities must not be conducted on weekends, national holidays, or from the Sunday prior to the Masters Golf Tournament through the Monday after (and subsequent weather days if required).” The terms and conditions in Items 2 and 3 remain unchanged.

The above modifications enhance the efficient use of airspace and reduce the burden on the public by lessening the amount of restricted airspace at Fort Gordon, GA, that is activated on a routine basis. These modifications do not change the current lateral boundaries, overall designated altitudes, or activities conducted within the restricted areas; therefore, notice and public procedure under 5 U.S.C. 553(b) are unnecessary.

Regulatory Notices and Analyses

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

Environmental Review

The FAA has determined that this action of vertically subdividing limits of existing restricted airspace within the current lateral and vertical limits qualifies for categorical exclusion under the National Environmental Policy Act and in accordance with FAA Order 1050.1F—Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures, Categorical Exclusions for Procedural Actions, paragraph 5-6.5d—Modification of the technical description of special use airspace (restricted areas) that does not alter the dimensions, altitudes, or times of designation of the airspace. Therefore, this airspace action is not expected to result in any significant environmental impacts. In accordance with FAAO 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 73

Airspace, prohibited areas, restricted areas.

Adoption of the Amendment

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

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

§ 73.30 [Amended]
2. § 73.30 is amended as follows: R-3004A Fort Gordon, GA [Amended]

By removing the current designated altitudes and aircraft activity limitations and inserting the following in their places:

Designated Altitudes. Surface to but not including 3,500 feet MSL.

Aircraft activity is limited to the following terms and conditions:

1. Aircraft activities must not be conducted on weekends, national holidays, or from the Sunday prior to the Masters Golf Tournament through the Monday after (and subsequent weather days if required).

2. Aircraft activities may only be conducted from the surface to 12,000 feet AGL.

3. Weather conditions required for aircraft activities are 5 miles visibility and with prevailing clouds or obscuring phenomena no greater than five-tenths coverage of the sky and bases no lower than 3,000 feet AGL.

R-3004B Fort Gordon, GA [Amended]

By removing the current designated altitudes and aircraft activity limitations and inserting the following in their places:

Designated Altitudes. 3,500 feet MSL to but not including 7,000 feet MSL.

Aircraft activity is limited to the following terms and conditions:

1. Aircraft activities must not be conducted on weekends, national holidays, or from the Sunday prior to the Masters Golf Tournament through the Monday after (and subsequent weather days if required).

2. Aircraft activities may only be conducted from the surface to 12,000 feet AGL.

3. Weather conditions required for aircraft activities are 5 miles visibility and with prevailing clouds or obscuring phenomena no greater than five-tenths coverage of the sky and bases no lower than 3,000 feet AGL.

R-3004C Fort Gordon, GA [New]

Boundaries. Beginning at lat. 33°21′54″ N., long. 82°12′14″ W.; to lat. 33°19′44″ N., long. 82°12′14″ W.; to lat. 33°16′21″ N., long. 82°17′59″ W.; to lat. 33°17′30″ N., long. 82°22′59″ W.; to lat. 33°21′16″ N., long. 82°18′46″ W.; to lat. 33°22′16″ N., long. 82°16′59″ W.; to the point of beginning.

Designated Altitudes. 7,000 feet MSL to 16,000 feet MSL.

Times of designation. By NOTAM 24 hours in advance.

Controlling agency. FAA, Atlanta ARTCC.

Using agency. U.S. Army, Commanding Officer, Fort Gordon, GA.

Aircraft activity is limited to the following terms and conditions:

1. Aircraft activities must not be conducted on weekends, national holidays, or from the Sunday prior to the Masters Golf Tournament through the Monday after (and subsequent weather days if required).

2. Aircraft activities may only be conducted from the surface to 12,000 feet AGL.

3. Weather conditions required for aircraft activities are 5 miles visibility and with prevailing clouds or obscuring phenomena no greater than five-tenths coverage of the sky and bases no lower than 3,000 feet AGL.

Issued in Washington, DC, on September 19, 2017. Rodger A. Dean, Jr., Manager, Airspace Policy Group.
[FR Doc. R1-2017-20435 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 1301-00-D
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 866 [Docket No. FDA-2017-N-5296] Medical Devices; Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of the Nucleic Acid-Based Device for the Amplification, Detection, and Identification of Microbial Pathogens Directly From Whole Blood Specimens AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final order.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or we) is classifying the nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens into class II (special controls). The special controls that apply to the device type are identified in this order and will be part of the codified language for the nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens' classification. We are taking this action because we have determined that classifying the device into class II (special controls) will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness of the device. We believe this action will also enhance patients' access to beneficial innovative devices, in part by reducing regulatory burdens.

DATES:

This order is effective October 16, 2017. The classification was applicable on September 22, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Steven Tjoe, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 4550, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-5866, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

Upon request, FDA has classified the nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens as class II (special controls), which we have determined will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In addition, we believe this action will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens by placing the device into a lower device class than the automatic class III assignment.

The automatic assignment of class III occurs by operation of law and without any action by FDA, regardless of the level of risk posed by the new device. Any device that was not in commercial distribution before May 28, 1976, is automatically classified as, and remains within, class III and requires premarket approval unless and until FDA takes an action to classify or reclassify the device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(1)). We refer to these devices as “postamendments devices” because they were not in commercial distribution prior to the date of enactment of the Medical Device Amendments of 1976, which amended the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act).

FDA may take a variety of actions in appropriate circumstances to classify or reclassify a device into class I or II. We may issue an order finding a new device to be substantially equivalent under section 513(i) of the FD&C Act to a predicate device that does not require premarket approval (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i)). We determine whether a new device is substantially equivalent to a predicate by means of the procedures for premarket notification under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act and part 807 (21 U.S.C. 360(k) and 21 CFR part 807, respectively).

FDA may also classify a device through “De Novo” classification, a common name for the process authorized under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act. Section 207 of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997 established the first procedure for De Novo classification (Pub. L. 105-115). Section 607 of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act modified the De Novo application process by adding a second procedure (Pub. L. 112-144). A device sponsor may utilize either procedure for De Novo classification.

Under the first procedure, the person submits a 510(k) for a device that has not previously been classified. After receiving an order from FDA classifying the device into class III under section 513(f)(1) of the FD&C Act, the person then requests a classification under section 513(f)(2).

Under the second procedure, rather than first submitting a 510(k) and then a request for classification, if the person determines that there is no legally marketed device upon which to base a determination of substantial equivalence, that person requests a classification under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act.

Under either procedure for De Novo classification, FDA is required to classify the device by written order within 120 days. The classification will be according to the criteria under section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. Although the device was automatically within class III, the De Novo classification is considered to be the initial classification of the device.

We believe this De Novo classification will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens. When FDA classifies a device into class I or II via the De Novo process, the device can serve as a predicate for future devices of that type, including for 510(k)s (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(2)(B)(i)). As a result, other device sponsors do not have to submit a De Novo request or PMA in order to market a substantially equivalent device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i), defining “substantial equivalence”). Instead, sponsors can use the less-burdensome 510(k) process, when necessary, to market their device.

II. De Novo Classification

On May 27, 2014, T2 Biosystems, Inc., submitted a request for classification of the T2Candida Panel and T2Dx® Instrument. FDA reviewed the request in order to classify the device under the criteria for classification set forth in section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. We classify devices into class II if general controls by themselves are insufficient to provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness, but there is sufficient information to establish special controls that, in combination with the general controls, provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device for its intended use (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(a)(1)(B)). After review of the information submitted in the request, we determined that the device can be classified into class II with the establishment of special controls. FDA has determined that these special controls, in addition to general controls, will provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device.

Therefore, on September 22, 2014, FDA issued an order to the requestor classifying the device into class II. FDA is codifying the classification of the device by adding 21 CFR 866.3960. We have named the generic type of device nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens, and it is identified as a qualitative in vitro device intended for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial-associated nucleic acid sequences from patients with suspected bloodstream infections. This device is intended to aid in the diagnosis of bloodstream infection when used in conjunction with clinical signs and symptoms and other laboratory findings.

FDA has identified the following risks to health associated specifically with this type of device and the measures required to mitigate these risks in table 1.

Table 1—Nucleic Acid-Based Device for the Amplification, Detection, and Identification of Microbial Pathogens Directly From Whole Blood Specimens Risks and Mitigation Measures Identified risks Mitigations measures Incorrect identification of a pathogenic microorganism by the device can lead to improper patient management Special Controls (1), (2), (3), (4), and (5). Failure to correctly interpret test results Special Control (6). Failure to correctly operate the instrument Special Controls (7) and (8).

FDA has determined that special controls, in combination with the general controls, address these risks to health and provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In order for a device to fall within this classification, and thus avoid automatic classification in class III, it would have to comply with the special controls named in this final order. The necessary special controls appear in the regulation codified by this order. This device is subject to premarket notification requirements under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act.

III. Analysis of Environmental Impact

The Agency has determined under 21 CFR 25.34(b) that this action is of a type that does not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. Therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required.

IV. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This final order establishes special controls that refer to previously approved collections of information found in other FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in part 807, subpart E, regarding premarket notification submissions have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0120, the collections of information in 21 CFR part 820 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0073, and the collections of information in 21 CFR parts 801 and 809, regarding labeling have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0485.

List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 866

Biologics, Laboratories, Medical devices.

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, 21 CFR part 866 is amended as follows:

PART 866—IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES 1. The authority citation for part 866 continues to read as follows: Authority:

21 U.S.C. 351, 360, 360c, 360e, 360j, 360l, 371.

2. Add § 866.3960 to subpart D to read as follows:
§ 866.3960 Nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens.

(a) Identification. A nucleic acid-based device for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial pathogens directly from whole blood specimens is a qualitative in vitro device intended for the amplification, detection, and identification of microbial-associated nucleic acid sequences from patients with suspected bloodstream infections. This device is intended to aid in the diagnosis of bloodstream infection when used in conjunction with clinical signs and symptoms and other laboratory findings.

(b) Classification. Class II (special controls). The special controls for this device are:

(1) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed device description documentation, including the device components, ancillary reagents required but not provided, and a detailed explanation of the methodology, including primer/probe sequence, design, and rationale for sequence selection.

(2) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation from the following analytical and clinical performance studies: Analytical sensitivity (limit of detection), reactivity, inclusivity, precision, reproducibility, interference, cross reactivity, carryover, and cross contamination.

(3) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation from a clinical study. The study, performed on a study population consistent with the intended use population, must compare the device performance to results obtained from well-accepted reference methods.

(4) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation for device software, including, but not limited to, software applications and hardware-based devices that incorporate software.

(5) The device labeling must include limitations regarding the need for culture confirmation of negative specimens, as appropriate.

(6) A detailed explanation of the interpretation of results and acceptance criteria must be included in the device's 21 CFR 809.10(b)(9) compliant labeling.

(7) Premarket notification submissions must include details on an end user device training program that will be offered while marketing the device, as appropriate.

(8) As part of the risk management activities performed as part of your 21 CFR 820.30 design controls, you must document an appropriate end user device training program that will be offered as part of your efforts to mitigate the risk of failure to correctly operate the instrument.

Dated: October 10, 2017. Anna K. Abram, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, Legislation, and Analysis.
[FR Doc. 2017-22287 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 866 [Docket No. FDA-2017-N-5714] Medical Devices; Immunology and Microbiology Devices; Classification of the Automated Image Assessment System for Microbial Colonies on Solid Culture Media AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final order.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or we) is classifying the automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media into class II (special controls). The special controls that apply to the device type are identified in this order and will be part of the codified language for the automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media's classification. We are taking this action because we have determined that classifying the device into class II (special controls) will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness of the device. We believe this action will also enhance patients' access to beneficial innovative devices, in part by reducing regulatory burdens.

DATES:

This order is effective October 16, 2017. The classification was applicable on October 6, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Steven Tjoe, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 4550, Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002, 301-796-5866 [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

Upon request, FDA has classified the automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media as class II (special controls), which we have determined will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In addition, we believe this action will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens by placing the device into a lower device class than the automatic class III assignment.

The automatic assignment of class III occurs by operation of law and without any action by FDA, regardless of the level of risk posed by the new device. Any device that was not in commercial distribution before May 28, 1976, is automatically classified as, and remains within, class III and requires premarket approval unless and until FDA takes an action to classify or reclassify the device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(1)). We refer to these devices as “postamendments devices” because they were not in commercial distribution prior to the date of enactment of the Medical Device Amendments of 1976, which amended the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act).

FDA may take a variety of actions in appropriate circumstances to classify or reclassify a device into class I or II. We may issue an order finding a new device to be substantially equivalent under section 513(i) of the FD&C Act to a predicate device that does not require premarket approval (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i)). We determine whether a new device is substantially equivalent to a predicate by means of the procedures for premarket notification under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act and part 807 (21 U.S.C. 360(k) and 21 CFR part 807, respectively).

FDA may also classify a device through “De Novo” classification, a common name for the process authorized under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act. Section 207 of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997 established the first procedure for De Novo classification (Pub. L. 105-115). Section 607 of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act modified the De Novo application process by adding a second procedure (Pub. L. 112-144). A device sponsor may utilize either procedure for De Novo classification.

Under the first procedure, the person submits a 510(k) for a device that has not previously been classified. After receiving an order from FDA classifying the device into class III under section 513(f)(1) of the FD&C Act, the person then requests a classification under section 513(f)(2).

Under the second procedure, rather than first submitting a 510(k) and then a request for classification, if the person determines that there is no legally marketed device upon which to base a determination of substantial equivalence, that person requests a classification under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act.

Under either procedure for De Novo classification, FDA shall classify the device by written order within 120 days. The classification will be according to the criteria under section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. Although the device was automatically placed within class III, the De Novo classification is considered to be the initial classification of the device.

We believe this De Novo classification will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens. When FDA classifies a device into class I or II via the De Novo process, the device can serve as a predicate for future devices of that type, including for 510(k)s (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(2)(B)(i)). As a result, other device sponsors do not have to submit a De Novo request or premarket approval application in order to market a substantially equivalent device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i), defining “substantial equivalence”). Instead, sponsors can use the less-burdensome 510(k) process, when necessary, to market their device.

II. De Novo Classification

On December 24, 2015, Clever Culture Systems AG submitted a request for De Novo classification of the APAS Compact. FDA reviewed the request in order to classify the device under the criteria for classification set forth in section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. We classify devices into class II if general controls by themselves are insufficient to provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness, but there is sufficient information to establish special controls that, in combination with the general controls, provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device for its intended use (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(a)(1)(B)). After review of the information submitted in the request, we determined that the device can be classified into class II with the establishment of special controls. FDA has determined that these special controls, in addition to general controls, will provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device.

Therefore, on October 6, 2016, FDA issued an order to the requestor classifying the device into class II. FDA is codifying the classification of the device by adding 21 CFR 866.2190. We have named the generic type of device automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media, and it is identified as a system that is intended to assess the presence or absence of microbial colonies on solid microbiological culture medium, and to interpret their number, and phenotypic and morphologic characteristics through analysis of two dimensional digital images as an aid in diagnosis of infectious disease.

FDA has identified the following risks to health associated specifically with this type of device and the measures required to mitigate these risks in table  1.

Table 1—Automated Image Assessment System for Microbial Colonies on Solid Culture Media Risks and Mitigation Measures Identified risks Mitigation measures/21 CFR section False positive results (i.e., incorrect designation of plates for “Review” or as “Positive”) General controls and special controls: (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7) (21 CFR 866.2190(b)(1); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(2); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(3); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(4); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(5); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(6); and 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(7)). False negative results (i.e., failure to detect growth and incorrect designation of plates as “Negative”) General controls and special controls: (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (6), (7) (21 CFR 866.2190(b)(1); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(2); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(3); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(4); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(5); 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(6); and 21 CFR 866.2190(b)(7)).

FDA has determined that special controls, in combination with the general controls, address these risks to health and provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In order for a device to fall within this classification, and thus avoid automatic classification in class III, it would have to comply with the special controls named in this final order. The necessary special controls appear in the regulation codified by this order. This device is subject to premarket notification requirements under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act.

III. Analysis of Environmental Impact

The Agency has determined under 21 CFR 25.34(b) that this action is of a type that does not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. Therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required.

IV. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This final order establishes special controls that refer to previously approved collections of information found in other FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in part 807, subpart E, regarding premarket notification submissions have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0120, the collections of information in part 820 have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0073, and the collections of information in 21 CFR parts 801 and 809, regarding labeling have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0485.

List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 866

Biologics, Laboratories, Medical devices.

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, 21 CFR part 866 is amended as follows:

PART 866—IMMUNOLOGY AND MICROBIOLOGY DEVICES 1. The authority citation for part 866 continues to read as follows: Authority:

21 U.S.C. 351, 360, 360c, 360e, 360j, 360l, 371.

2. Add § 866.2190 to subpart C to read as follows:
§ 866.2190 Automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media.

(a) Identification. An automated image assessment system for microbial colonies on solid culture media is a system that is intended to assess the presence or absence of microbial colonies on solid microbiological culture medium, and to interpret their number, and phenotypic and morphologic characteristics through analysis of two dimensional digital images as an aid in diagnosis of infectious disease.

(b) Classification. Class II (special controls). The special controls for this device are:

(1) Premarket notification submissions must include a detailed description of the device, including the technology employed, components and software modules, as well as a detailed explanation of the result algorithms and any expert rules that are used to assess colony characteristics and enumerate colonies from image capture through end result.

(2) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation of the analytical studies performed to characterize device performance to support the intended use, as appropriate.

(3) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation from clinical studies performed on a population that is consistent with the intended use population.

(i) The clinical studies must establish the device performance based on comparison to results obtained by an acceptable reference method, as appropriate.

(ii) The clinical study documentation must include the study protocol with a predefined statistical analysis plan and the final report documenting support for the Indications for Use and the results of the statistical analysis, as appropriate.

(4) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation for device software, including but not limited to software applications and hardware based components that incorporate software, and any decision-making thresholds used to generate results for the device. If a part of a Total Laboratory Automation System, the premarket notification submission must include detailed documentation addressing the instrument and software system integration.

(5) Premarket notification submissions must include detailed documentation of appropriate instructions for use regarding the intended user's device quality control procedures for the instrument system and components, as appropriate.

(6) The 21 CFR 809.10 compliant device labeling must include:

(i) Detailed user instructions to mitigate the risk of failure to operate the instrument correctly.

(ii) A detailed explanation of the interpretation of results and limitations regarding the need for review of culture plates by a qualified microbiologist, as appropriate.

(iii) A summary of performance data obtained from the analytical studies used to support device performance, as appropriate.

(iv) A summary of performance data obtained from clinical studies performed on a population that is consistent with the intended use population, as appropriate.

(7) Under 21 CFR 820.30 compliant design control, device manufacturers must, as appropriate:

(i) Conduct human factors/usability validation testing with the final version of the labeling and related materials to adequately mitigate the risk of failure to operate the instrument correctly.

(ii) Document a device training program that will be offered to the end user to adequately mitigate the risk of failure to operate the instrument correctly.

Dated: October 11, 2017. Leslie Kux, Associate Commissioner for Policy.
[FR Doc. 2017-22305 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES Food and Drug Administration 21 CFR Part 876 [Docket No. FDA-2017-N-5224] Medical Devices; Gastroenterology-Urology Devices; Classification of the Enzyme Packed Cartridge AGENCY:

Food and Drug Administration, HHS.

ACTION:

Final order.

SUMMARY:

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or we) is classifying the enzyme packed cartridge into class II (special controls). The special controls that apply to the device type are identified in this order and will be part of the codified language for the enzyme packed cartridge's classification. We are taking this action because we have determined that classifying the device into class II (special controls) will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness of the device. We believe this action will also enhance patients' access to beneficial innovative devices, in part by reducing regulatory burdens.

DATES:

This order is effective October 16, 2017. The classification was applicable on November 20, 2015.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Joshua Silverstein, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration, 10903 New Hampshire Ave., Bldg. 66, Rm. 1615, Silver Spring, MD, 20993-0002, 301-796-5155, [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

Upon request, FDA has classified the enzyme packed cartridge as class II (special controls), which we have determined will provide a reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In addition, we believe this action will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens by placing the device into a lower device class than the automatic class III assignment.

The automatic assignment of class III occurs by operation of law and without any action by FDA, regardless of the level of risk posed by the new device. Any device that was not in commercial distribution before May 28, 1976, is automatically classified as, and remains within, class III and requires premarket approval unless and until FDA takes an action to classify or reclassify the device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(1)). We refer to these devices as “postamendments devices” because they were not in commercial distribution prior to the date of enactment of the Medical Device Amendments of 1976, which amended the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act).

FDA may take a variety of actions in appropriate circumstances to classify or reclassify a device into class I or II. We may issue an order finding a new device to be substantially equivalent under section 513(i) of the FD&C Act to a predicate device that does not require premarket approval (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i)). We determine whether a new device is substantially equivalent to a predicate by means of the procedures for premarket notification under section 510(k) of the FD&C Act and part 807 (21 U.S.C. 360(k) and 21 CFR part 807, respectively).

FDA may also classify a device through “De Novo” classification, a common name for the process authorized under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act. Section 207 of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997 established the first procedure for De Novo classification (Pub. L. 105-115). Section 607 of the Food and Drug Administration Safety and Innovation Act modified the De Novo application process by adding a second procedure (Pub. L. 112-144). A device sponsor may utilize either procedure for De Novo classification.

Under the first procedure, the person submits a 510(k) for a device that has not previously been classified. After receiving an order from FDA classifying the device into class III under section 513(f)(1) of the FD&C Act, the person then requests a classification under section 513(f)(2).

Under the second procedure, rather than first submitting a 510(k) and then a request for classification, if the person determines that there is no legally marketed device upon which to base a determination of substantial equivalence, that person requests a classification under section 513(f)(2) of the FD&C Act.

Under either procedure for De Novo classification, FDA shall classify the device by written order within 120 days. The classification will be according to the criteria under section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. Although the device was automatically within class III, the De Novo classification is considered to be the initial classification of the device.

We believe this De Novo classification will enhance patients' access to beneficial innovation, in part by reducing regulatory burdens. When FDA classifies a device into class I or II via the De Novo process, the device can serve as a predicate for future devices of that type, including for 510(k)s (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(f)(2)(B)(i)). As a result, other device sponsors do not have to submit a De Novo request or premarket approval application in order to market a substantially equivalent device (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(i), defining “substantial equivalence”). Instead, sponsors can use the less burdensome 510(k) process, when necessary, to market their device.

II. De Novo Classification

On January 2, 2015, Alcresta, Inc. submitted a request for De Novo classification of the RELIZORBTM. FDA reviewed the request in order to classify the device under the criteria for classification set forth in section 513(a)(1) of the FD&C Act. We classify devices into class II if general controls by themselves are insufficient to provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness, but there is sufficient information to establish special controls that, in combination with the general controls, provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device for its intended use (see 21 U.S.C. 360c(a)(1)(B)). After review of the information submitted in the request, we determined that the device can be classified into class II with the establishment of special controls. FDA has determined that these special controls, in addition to general controls, will provide reasonable assurance of the safety and effectiveness of the device.

Therefore, on November 20, 2015, FDA issued an order to the requestor classifying the device into class II. FDA is codifying the classification of the device by adding 21 CFR 876.5985. We have named the generic type of device enzyme packed cartridge, and it is identified as an ex vivo prescription device that is used in enzymatic hydrolysis of macronutrients into their essential nutrient forms at the time of delivery. The device consists of an outer casing containing an inert polymer with a covalently bound enzyme through which nutritional formula is directed. The device fits in line with enteral feeding systems.

FDA has identified the following risks to health associated specifically with this type of device and the measures required to mitigate these risks in table 1.

Table 1—Enzyme Packed Cartridge Risks and Mitigation Measures Identified risks Mitigation measures Adverse tissue reaction Biocompatibility testing, Non-clinical testing, In vivo testing, and Labeling. Mechanical failure Non-clinical testing, Shelf life testing, and Labeling. • Deprivation of care • Device clogging • Filter becomes dislodged and releases beads into enteral formula Reduced enzymatic effect Non-clinical testing, In vivo testing, Shelf life testing, and Labeling. Use error Human factors testing and Labeling. Infection Shelf life testing and Labeling.

FDA has determined that special controls, in combination with the general controls, address these risks to health and provide reasonable assurance of safety and effectiveness. In order for a device to fall within this classification, and thus avoid automatic classification in class III, it would have to comply with the special controls named in this final order. The necessary special controls appear in the regulation codified by this order. This device is subject to premarket notification requirements under section 510(k).

At the time of classification, enzyme packed cartridges are for prescription use only. Prescription devices are exempt from the requirement for adequate directions for use for the layperson under section 502(f)(1) of the FD&C Act (21 U.S.C. 352(f)(1)) and 21 CFR 801.5, as long as the conditions of 21 CFR 801.109 are met.

III. Analysis of Environmental Impact

The Agency has determined under 21 CFR 25.34(b) that this action is of a type that does not individually or cumulatively have a significant effect on the human environment. Therefore, neither an environmental assessment nor an environmental impact statement is required.

IV. Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This final administrative order establishes special controls that refer to previously approved collections of information found in other FDA regulations. These collections of information are subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The collections of information in part 807, subpart E, regarding premarket notification submissions have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0120, and the collections of information in 21 CFR part 801, regarding labeling, have been approved under OMB control number 0910-0485.

List of Subjects in 21 CFR Part 876

Medical devices.

Therefore, under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and under authority delegated to the Commissioner of Food and Drugs, 21 CFR part 876 is amended as follows:

PART 876—GASTROENTEROLOGY-UROLOGY DEVICES 1. The authority citation for part 876 continues to read as follows: Authority:

21 U.S.C. 351, 360, 360c, 360e, 360j, 360l, 371.

2. Add § 876.5985 to subpart F to read as follows:
§ 876.5985 Enzyme packed cartridge.

(a) Identification. An enzyme packed cartridge is an ex vivo prescription device that is used in enzymatic hydrolysis of macronutrients into their essential nutrient forms at the time of delivery. The device consists of an outer casing containing an inert polymer with a covalently bound enzyme through which nutritional formula is directed. The device fits in line with enteral feeding systems.

(b) Classification. Class II (special controls). The special controls for this device are:

(1) The patient contacting components of the device must be demonstrated to be biocompatible.

(2) In vivo testing must be performed and must demonstrate that the device causes neither an adverse tissue response nor adverse performance.

(3) Non-clinical testing must demonstrate that the device performs as intended under anticipated conditions of use. The following performance characteristics must be demonstrated:

(i) Mechanical testing to demonstrate that the device can withstand clinical forces;

(ii) Flow rate and leakage testing to demonstrate that the device does not impede the flow of enteral formula;

(iii) Demonstration of enzymatic effect on intended macronutrient;

(iv) The amount of enzyme that exits the cartridge must be characterized;

(v) Validation that the device does not adversely impact the nutritional composition of enteral formula; and

(vi) Validation that the device does not impede flow alarms on enteral feeding pumps.

(4) Human factors testing must be performed to characterize use error risks.

(5) Performance data must support shelf life by demonstrating package integrity and device functionality over the identified shelf life.

(6) Labeling must include the following:

(i) A detailed summary of in vivo testing pertinent to use of the device, including device-related adverse events;

(ii) A detailed summary of compatible formulas that is supported by non-clinical testing, including the expected enzymatic conversion as a percentage;

(iii) Detailed instructions on how to place the device into an enteral feeding circuit;

(iv) A warning regarding the possibility for misconnections; and

(v) Expiration date or shelf life.

(7) Patient labeling must be provided and must include:

(i) Relevant warnings, precautions, adverse effects, and complications;

(ii) A description of the device and how it operates;

(iii) Instructions on how to correctly use the device; and

(iv) The benefits and risks associated with the use of the device.

Dated: October 10, 2017. Anna K. Abram, Deputy Commissioner for Policy, Planning, Legislation, and Analysis.
[FR Doc. 2017-22286 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4164-01-P
DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE Drug Enforcement Administration 21 CFR Part 1308 [Docket No. DEA-402] Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 Into Schedule I AGENCY:

Drug Enforcement Administration, Department of Justice.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

With the issuance of this final rule, the Drug Enforcement Administration places N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA), and [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201), including their salts, isomers, and salts of isomers whenever the existence of such salts, isomers, and salts of isomers is possible, into schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act. This scheduling action is pursuant to the Controlled Substances Act which requires that such actions be made on the record after opportunity for a hearing through formal rulemaking. This rule continues the imposition of 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, conduct instructional activities or chemical analysis, or possess), or propose to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201.

DATES:

Effective October 16, 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

Under the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), each controlled substance is classified into one of five schedules based upon its potential for abuse, its currently accepted medical use, and the degree of dependence the substance may cause. 21 U.S.C. 812. The initial schedules of controlled substances established by Congress are found at 21 U.S.C. 812(c), and the current list of scheduled substances is published at 21 CFR part 1308.

Pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 811(a)(1), the Attorney General may, by rule, “add to such a schedule or transfer between such schedules any drug or other substance if he (A) finds that such drug or other substance has a potential for abuse, and (B) makes with respect to such drug or other substance the findings prescribed by subsection (b) of section 812 of this title for the schedule in which such drug is to be placed. . . .” The Attorney General has delegated scheduling authority under 21 U.S.C. 811 to the Administrator of the DEA. 28 CFR 0.100.

The CSA provides that proceedings for the issuance, amendment, or repeal of the scheduling of any drug or other substance may be initiated by the Attorney General (1) on his own motion; (2) at the request of the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS); 1 or (3) on the petition of any interested party. 21 U.S.C. 811(a). This action was initiated on the Attorney General's own motion, as delegated to the Administrator of the DEA, and is supported by, inter alia, a recommendation from the Assistant Secretary for Health of the HHS and an evaluation of all relevant data by the DEA. This action continues the imposition of the regulatory controls and administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions of schedule I controlled substances on any person who handles or proposes to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201.

1 As set forth in a memorandum of understanding entered into by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), the FDA acts as the lead agency within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in carrying out the Secretary's scheduling responsibilities under the CSA, with the concurrence of NIDA. 50 FR 9518, Mar. 8, 1985. The Secretary of the HHS has delegated to the Assistant Secretary for Health of the HHS the authority to make domestic drug scheduling recommendations. 58 FR 35460, July 1, 1993.

Background

On January 30, 2015, the DEA published a final order in the Federal Register amending 21 CFR 1308.11(h) to temporarily place the three synthetic cannabinoids N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA), and[1-(5-Fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl) methanone (THJ-2201) into schedule I of the CSA pursuant to the temporary scheduling provisions of 21 U.S.C. 811(h). 80 FR 5042. That final order was effective on the date of publication, and was based on findings by the Administrator of the DEA that the temporary scheduling of these three synthetic cannabinoids was necessary to avoid an imminent hazard to the public safety pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 811(h)(1). Section 201(h)(2) of the CSA, 21 U.S.C. 811(h)(2), requires that the temporary control of these substances expire two years from the issuance date of the scheduling order, on or before January 29, 2017. However, the CSA also provides that during the pendency of proceedings under 21 U.S.C. 811(a)(1) with respect to the substance, the temporary scheduling of that substance could be extended for up to one year. Accordingly, on January 27, 2017, the DEA extended the temporary scheduling of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 by one year, or until January 29, 2018. 82 FR 8590. Also, on January 27, 2017, the DEA published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to permanently control AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 in schedule I of the CSA. 82 FR 8593. Specifically, DEA proposed to add these three synthetic cannabinoids to 21 CFR 1308.11(d), hallucinogenic substances.

DEA and HHS Eight Factor Analyses

On November 14, 2016, the HHS provided the DEA with a scientific and medical evaluation document prepared by the FDA entitled “Basis for the Recommendation to Place [1-(5-Fluoropentyl)-1H-Indazol-3-yl] (Naphthalen-1-yl) Methanone (THJ-2201), N-[(2S)-1-Amino-3-Methyl-1-Oxo-2-Butanyl]-1-Pentyl-1H-Indazole-3-Carboxamide (AB-PINACA), and N-[(2S)-1-Amino-3-Methyl-1-Oxo-2-Butanyl]-1-(Cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-Indazole-3-Carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA) and their Salts in Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act.” After considering the eight factors in 21 U.S.C. 811(c), and also considering each substance's abuse potential, lack of legitimate medical use in the United States, and lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 812(b), the Assistant Secretary of the HHS recommended that AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 be controlled in schedule I of the CSA. In response, the DEA conducted its own eightfactor analysis of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201. The DEA and HHS analyses are available in their entirety in the public docket for this rule (Docket Number DEA-402/DEA-2017-0001) at http://www.regulations.gov under “Supporting Documents.”

Determination to Schedule AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201

After a review of the available data, including the scientific and medical evaluation and the scheduling recommendations from the HHS, the DEA published an NPRM entitled “Schedules of Controlled Substances: Placement of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 into Schedule I,” proposing to control AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201, and their salts, isomers, and salts of isomers in schedule I of the CSA. 82 FR 8593, January 27, 2017. The proposed rule provided an opportunity for interested persons to file a request for hearing in accordance with the DEA regulations on or before February 27, 2017. No requests for such a hearing were received by the DEA. The NPRM also provided an opportunity for interested persons to submit written comments on the proposal on or before February 27, 2017.

Comments Received

The DEA received five comments on the proposed rule to control AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 in schedule I of the CSA.

Support for rulemaking: Five commenters gave support for the rulemaking stating in unison that these substances have no medical use and are a danger to the community.

DEA Response: The DEA appreciates the comments in support of this rulemaking.

Scheduling Conclusion

After consideration of the relevant matter presented as a result of public comments, the scientific and medical evaluations and accompanying recommendation of the HHS, and after its own eight-factor evaluation, the DEA finds that these facts and all other relevant data constitute substantial evidence of potential for abuse of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201. As such, the DEA is permanently scheduling AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 as controlled substances under the CSA.

Determination of Appropriate Schedule

The CSA establishes five schedules of controlled substances known as schedules I, II, III, IV, and V. The CSA also outlines the findings required to place a drug or other substance in any particular schedule. 21 U.S.C. 812(b). After consideration of the analyses and recommendations of the Assistant Secretary for HHS and review of all other available data, the Administrator of the DEA, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 811(a) and 21 U.S.C. 812(b)(1), finds that:

(1) N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA) and [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201) have a high potential for abuse that is comparable to other schedule I substances such as delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) and JWH-018;

(2) N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA) and [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201) have no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States; and

(3) There is a lack of accepted safety for use of N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA) and [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201) under medical supervision.

Based on these findings, the Administrator of the DEA concludes that N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA), N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA) and [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201) including their salts, isomers and salts of isomers, whenever the existence of such salts, isomers, and salts of isomers is possible, warrant control in schedule I of the CSA. 21 U.S.C. 812(b)(1).

Requirements for Handling AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201

AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 will continue 2 to be subject to the CSA's schedule I regulatory controls and administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions applicable to the manufacture, distribution, dispensing, importing, exporting, research, and conduct of instructional activities, including the following:

2 AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 are currently subject to schedule I controls on a temporary basis, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 811(h). 80 FR 5042, Jan. 30, 2015.

1. Registration. Any person who handles (manufactures, distributes, imports, exports, engages in research, or conducts instructional activities or chemical analysis with, or possesses), or who desires to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201, 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. Security. AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201are 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 through 1301.93.

3. Labeling and Packaging. All labels and labeling for commercial containers of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 must be in compliance with 21 U.S.C. 825 and 958(e), and be in accordance with 21 CFR part 1302.

4. Quota. Only registered manufacturers are permitted to manufacture AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 in accordance with a quota assigned pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 826 and in accordance with 21 CFR part 1303.

5. Inventory. Every DEA registrant who possesses any quantity of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201 on the effective date of this final rule, must take an inventory of all stocks of these substances on hand as of October 16, 2017, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 827 and 958 and in accordance with 21 CFR 1304.03, 1304.04, and 1304.11 (a) and (d). Current DEA registrants shall have 30 calendar days from the effective date of this order to be in compliance with all inventory requirements.

After the initial inventory, every DEA registrant must take a new inventory of all controlled substances (including AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and THJ-2201) on hand on a biennial basis, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 827 and 958, and in accordance with 21 CFR 1304.03, 1304.04, and 1304.11.

6. Records and Reports. Every DEA registrant must maintain records and submit reports with respect to AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and/or THJ-2201 pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 827 and 958(e), and in accordance with 21 CFR parts 1304 and 1312.

7. Order Forms. Every DEA registrant who distributes AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 must continue to comply with the order form requirements, pursuant to 21 U.S.C. 828, and 21 CFR part 1305.

8. Importation and Exportation. All importation and exportation of AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 must continue to be in compliance with 21 U.S.C. 952, 953, 957, and 958, and in accordance with 21 CFR part 1312.

9. Liability. Any activity involving AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 not authorized by, or in violation of, the CSA or its implementing regulations is unlawful, and may subject the person to administrative, civil, and/or criminal sanctions.

Regulatory Analyses Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

In accordance with 21 U.S.C. 811(a), this final scheduling action is subject to formal rulemaking procedures performed “on the record after opportunity for a hearing,” which are conducted pursuant to the provisions of 5 U.S.C. 556 and 557. The CSA sets forth the criteria for scheduling a drug or other substance. Such actions are exempt from review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) pursuant to section 3(d)(1) of Executive Order 12866 and the principles reaffirmed in Executive Order 13563.

Executive Order 12988

This regulation meets the applicable standards set forth in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988 to eliminate drafting errors and ambiguity, minimize litigation, provide a clear legal standard for affected conduct, and promote simplification and burden reduction.

Executive Order 13132

This rulemaking does not have federalism implications warranting the application of Executive Order 13132. The rule does not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the National Government and the States, or the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.

Executive Order 13175

This rule does not have tribal implications warranting the application of Executive Order 13175. It 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 Administrator, in accordance with the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601-602, has reviewed this final rule and by approving it certifies that it will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. On January 30, 2015, the DEA published a final order to temporarily place these three substances into schedule I of the CSA pursuant to the temporary scheduling provisions of 21 U.S.C. 811(h). The DEA estimates that all entities handling or planning to handle these substances have already established and implemented the systems and processes required to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201. There are currently 25 registrations authorized to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA and/or THJ-2201 specifically, as well as a number of registered analytical labs that are authorized to handle schedule I controlled substances generally. These 25 registrations represent 18 entities, of which 8 are small entities. Therefore, the DEA estimates eight small entities are affected by this rule.

A review of the 25 registrations indicates that all entities that currently handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201 also handle other schedule I controlled substances, and have established and implemented (or maintain) the systems and processes required to handle AB-CHMINACA, AB-PINACA or THJ-2201. Therefore, the DEA anticipates that this rule will impose minimal or no economic impact on any affected entities; and thus, will not have a significant economic impact on any of the eight affected small entities. Therefore, the DEA has concluded that this rule will not have a significant effect on a substantial number of small entities.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

In accordance with the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) of 1995, 2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq., the DEA has determined and certifies that this action would not result in any Federal mandate that may result “in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100,000,000 or more (adjusted for inflation) in any one year. . . .” Therefore, neither a Small Government Agency Plan nor any other action is required under UMRA of 1995.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

This action does not impose a new collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. 44 U.S.C. 3501-3521. This action would not impose recordkeeping or reporting requirements on State or local governments, individuals, businesses, or organizations. 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 rule is not a major rule as defined by section 804 of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Congressional Review Act (CRA)). This rule will not result in: “an annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more; a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions; or significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of U.S.-based companies to compete with foreign based companies in domestic and export markets.” However, pursuant to the CRA, the DEA has submitted a copy of this final rule 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, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

For the reasons set out above, 21 CFR part 1308 is amended 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), unless otherwise noted.

2. In § 1308.11, a. Add paragraphs (d)(69) through (71); b. Remove paragraphs (h)(1) through (3); and c. Redesignate paragraphs (h)(4) through (17) as (h)(1) through (14).

The additions to read as follows:

§ 1308.11 Schedule I.

(d) * * *

(69) N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-(cyclohexylmethyl)-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-CHMINACA) (7031) (70) N-(1-amino-3-methyl-1-oxobutan-2-yl)-1-pentyl-1H-indazole-3-carboxamide (AB-PINACA) (7023) (71) [1-(5-fluoropentyl)-1H-indazol-3-yl](naphthalen-1-yl)methanone (THJ-2201) (7024)
Dated: October 6, 2017. Robert Patterson, Acting Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2017-22325 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4410-09-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2017-0966] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Cerritos Channel, Long Beach, CA AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of deviation from drawbridge regulation.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard has issued a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Henry Ford Avenue railroad bridge across the Cerritos Channel, mile 4.8, at Long Beach, CA. The deviation is necessary to allow the bridge owner to install necessary electrical equipment inside the bridge machinery room and operator house. This deviation allows the bridge to remain in the closed-to-navigation position during the deviation period.

DATES:

This deviation is effective from 8 a.m. through noon on October 20, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

The docket for this deviation, USCG-2017-0966, is available at http://www.regulations.gov. Type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH.” Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this deviation.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Carl T. Hausner, Chief, Bridge Section, Eleventh Coast Guard District; telephone 510-437-3516; email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Port of Los Angeles has requested a temporary change to the operation of the Henry Ford Avenue railroad bridge, mile 4.8, over the Cerritos Channel, at Long Beach, CA. The drawbridge navigation span provides a vertical clearance of 6 feet above Mean High Water in the closed-to-navigation position. The draw operates as required by 33 CFR 117.147(b). Navigation on the waterway is commercial, search and rescue, law enforcement, and recreational.

The drawspan will be secured in the closed-to-navigation position from 8 a.m. through noon on October 20, 2017, to allow the bridge owner to install necessary electrical equipment inside the bridge machinery room and operator house. This temporary deviation has been coordinated with the waterway users. No objections to the proposed temporary deviation were raised.

Vessels able to pass through the bridge in the closed position may do so at any time. The bridge will not be able to open for emergencies. Los Angeles Harbor can be used as an alternate route for vessels unable to pass through the bridge in the closed position. The Coast Guard will also inform the users of the waterway through our Local and Broadcast Notices to Mariners of the change in operating schedule for the bridge so vessel operators can arrange their transits to minimize any impact caused by the temporary deviation.

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

Dated: October 10, 2017. Carl T. Hausner, District Bridge Chief, Eleventh Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2017-22293 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 117 [Docket No. USCG-2017-0959] Drawbridge Operation Regulation; Grand Lake, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana AGENCY:

Coast Guard, DHS.

ACTION:

Notice of deviation from drawbridge regulation.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard has issued a temporary deviation from the operating schedule that governs the Black Bayou Pontoon Bridge on State Road 384 across the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) at mile marker (MM) 237.5, West of Harvey Locks (WHL) at Grand Lake, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana. The deviation is necessary to make extensive repairs to the bridge.

DATES:

This deviation is effective without actual notice from October 16, 2017 until December 20, 2017. For the purposes of enforcement, actual notice will be used from October 9, 2017 until October 16, 2017.

ADDRESSES:

The docket for this deviation, USCG-2017-0959 is available at http://www.regulations.gov. Type the docket number in the “SEARCH” box and click “SEARCH”. Click on Open Docket Folder on the line associated with this deviation.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

If you have questions on this temporary deviation, call or email Douglas Blakemore, Bridge Administration Branch, Coast Guard; telephone 504-671-2128, email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LA-DOTD) has requested to change the operating schedule that governs the Black Bayou Pontoon Bridge on State Road 384 across the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) mile 237.5 West of Harvey Locks (WHL) at Grand Lake, Calcasieu Parish, Louisiana. Closures to navigation traffic are required to make extensive repairs to the bridge protective system, tower and mechanical systems. This bridge operates under 33 CFR 117.5.

This deviation allows the bridge to close to vessel traffic during specific dates and times from October 9, 2017 through December 20, 2017 as follows: October 9-10, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; October 18-19, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; October 23-26 from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; October 30-31, 2017 from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; November 7, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; November 17-18, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; November 20-22 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; November 27, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; November 28-30, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 1-2, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 4-7, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 11-12, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 13, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 14-16, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.; December 18-19, 2017 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

During the above periods of closures, vessels will not be able to pass through the bridge.

Navigation at the site primarily consists of tugs and tows. The bridge will be able to open to vessel traffic during emergencies. The Coast Guard will inform waterways users of the bridge closures through Local and Broadcast Notices to Mariners so that vessel operators can arrange their transits to minimize any impact caused by the temporary deviation.

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

Dated: October 10, 2017. Douglas Allen Blakemore, Sr., Bridge Administrator, Eight Coast Guard District.
[FR Doc. 2017-22292 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 9110-04-P
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY Coast Guard 33 CFR Part 155 [Docket No. USCG-2016-0437] Update to Alternative Planning Criteria National Guidelines AGENCY:

Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security.

ACTION:

National guidelines; update.

SUMMARY:

The Coast Guard announces the availability of the updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines for vessel response plans (VRPs). These national guidelines provide the maritime industry with updated information on developing and submitting alternative planning criteria (alternatives). Furthermore, they facilitate consistency in the Coast Guard's review of proposed alternatives.

DATES:

The updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines are available on October 16, 2017. The Coast Guard recommends that new alternatives and alternatives submitted for renewal follow the updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines. Requests for extension of currently accepted alternatives may be approved for a period not to exceed six months from the date of expiration.

ADDRESSES:

MER Policy Letter 01-17: Alternative Planning Criteria National Guidelines for Vessel Response Plans is available in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov, and on https://homeport.uscg.mil under Environmental > Vessel Response Plan Program. Comments and material received from the public, as well as documents mentioned in this notice of availability, are in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov and can be viewed by following that Web site's instructions.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

For further information about this document, call or email CDR Kevin Boyd, U.S. Coast Guard, Office of Marine Environmental Response, telephone 202-372-1226; email [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Contents I. Abbreviations II. Background III. Response to Comments I. Abbreviations CFR Code of Federal Regulations CG-543 U.S. Coast Guard Office of Commercial Vessel Compliance COTP Captain of the Port D17 U.S. Coast Guard District 17 in Alaska MSIB Marine Safety Information Bulletin NPC National Planning Criteria VRP Vessel Response Plan U.S. United States II. Background

The alternative planning criteria national guidelines provide the maritime industry with guidance on developing and submitting alternatives in accordance with the regulations. Tank and nontank vessels meeting the applicability requirements in 33 CFR 155.1015 and 155.5015 must submit vessel response plans (VRPs). If a vessel owner or operator believes the national planning criteria (NPC) provided in 33 CFR part 155 are inappropriate for the areas in which the vessel intends to operate, the vessel owner or operator can submit an alternative(s) pursuant to 33 CFR 155.1065(f) and 155.5067. In August 2009, the U.S. Coast Guard (Coast Guard) published CG-543 Policy Letter 09-02, “Industry Guidelines for Requesting Alternate Planning Criteria Approval, One Time Waivers and Interim Operating Authorization.” The purpose of CG-543 Policy Letter 09-02, was to provide guidance to the maritime industry in proposing an alternative for tank vessel response plans pursuant to 33 CFR 155.1065(f). In September 2013, the Coast Guard published a final rule for nontank vessel regulations in 33 CFR part 155, subpart J (78 FR 60100). This final rule made the NPC in 33 CFR part 155 applicable to thousands of additional vessels across the U.S., including geographic areas with limited commercially available response resources. In 2015, D17 published a draft Marine Safety Information Bulletin (MSIB) that provided guidance for proposed alternative submissions and expectations within Alaskan waters, with a focus on nontank vessel traffic. Given the multitude of comments concerning alternative planning criteria, especially from various sectors of the maritime industry on the draft D17 MSIB, the Coast Guard determined it would be best to update the alternative planning criteria national guidelines to provide a foundation inclusive of both tank and nontank vessel communities and that applied nationally. Between 2016 and 2017, the Coast Guard drafted an update to the alternative planning criteria national guidelines, and made this available for public comment.

III. Response to Comments

On May 27, 2016, the Coast Guard published a notice announcing the availability of a draft update to the alternative planning criteria national guidelines in the Federal Register (81 FR 33685). On August 16, 2016, the Coast Guard published in the Federal Register a notice announcing a public meeting and an extension to the comment period until September 23, 2016 (81 FR 54584). The public meeting was held on September 21, 2016, in Anchorage, Alaska. On January 10, 2017, the Coast Guard published a notice announcing the reopening of the comment period until April 10, 2017 (82 FR 3016). In conjunction with the reopened comment period, additional public meetings were held to further the dialogue and awareness of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines with federal, state, tribal, and local communities, especially in remote areas of Alaska including Bethel, Dillingham, Kotzebue, Nome, Utqiagvik, Kodiak, and Dutch Harbor.

In summary, the Coast Guard received 49 electronic submissions during the two public comment periods. In addition, the Coast Guard heard statements from 12 speakers at the public meeting convened in Anchorage on September 21, 2016. From the electronically submitted comments and the statements, the Coast Guard received approximately 200 individual comments.

The Coast Guard appreciates the amount of time that federal, state, tribal, and local government entities, as well as private industry, committed throughout the two public comment periods to provide input. The value of all comments and feedback received in this process cannot be overstated. We carefully considered all of the input received when drafting the final revision to the alternative planning criteria national guidelines. A summary of all comments, and the Coast Guard's response to them, is available in our online docket at http://www.regulations.gov, and on https://homeport.uscg.mil under Environmental > Vessel Response Plan Program.

A. Alternatives as a Temporary Versus a Permanent Solution

The Coast Guard received 25 comments recommending that the alternatives permitted under 33 CFR 155.1065 and 155.5067 be accepted as permanent equivalencies with the National Planning Criteria (NPC) found in 33 CFR part 155. The Coast Guard disagrees. The Coast Guard views the allowance for alternatives to the response standards required in 33 CFR part 155 as a bridging strategy to future NPC compliance. The Coast Guard does acknowledge, however, that some operating areas, especially remote areas, may require long-term alternatives.

Particular to the NPC as an end state, one commenter noted that there exists an assumption by the Coast Guard that meeting the NPC is the only acceptable option for planning and responding to marine casualties that pose a threat of pollution, and that this assumption is flawed. We do not agree that there is an assumption that meeting the NPC is the only acceptable option for planning and responding to marine casualties that pose a threat of pollution. Such an assumption is contrary to the purpose and intent of the regulations that allow alternative planning criteria.

B. Prevention Measures

The Coast Guard received 21 comments stating that the Coast Guard, in the draft alternative planning criteria national guidelines, is abandoning prevention measures. Another commenter stated that the updated guidelines suggest that tracking and monitoring capability could take the place of the need to plan for resource capability. The Coast Guard disagrees. Prevention measures are fully acceptable when included in an alternative, but do not equal the value of response and recovery-based strategies at the time of an incident. Language in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines that may have led to the impression that prevention measures, such as vessel tracking and monitoring, could take the place of resource capability was removed.

Specific to prevention measures, one commenter believes that a conflict exists between the alternative planning criteria national guidelines and the regulations. Specifically, the commenter points out that the guidelines include very specific requirements for a tracking and monitoring system. In consideration of this comment and to avoid the perception of creating new requirements, the Coast Guard has amended the draft national guidelines to no longer include tracking and monitoring systems as a specific prevention measure within an alternative. However, we consider tracking and monitoring systems as a helpful tool for both response and prevention strategies.

One commenter noted that vessel tracking and monitoring is not necessary for all alternatives. The Coast Guard agrees. The alternative planning criteria national guidelines do not mandate the use or inclusion of vessel tracking and monitoring in proposals for alternatives.

C. Regulatory Overreach of the Alternative Planning Criteria National Guidelines

One commenter perceived that the Coast Guard was requiring the tracking of vessels to be employed in a proposed “response vessel of opportunity” network. The Coast Guard disagrees and notes that the mention of vessel of opportunity tracking was an example of a process that an alternative might consider/propose. Nevertheless, language in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines was removed that may have led to the impression that tracking of vessels was required in a proposed “response vessel of opportunity” network.

Seventeen comments suggested that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines represent regulatory overreach and an attempt to side-step the rulemaking process. The Coast Guard disagrees. The alternative planning criteria national guidelines do not create any substantive legal requirements on the regulated population. Under current Coast Guard regulation, owners and operators of both tank vessels (33 CFR 155.1065(f)) and nontank vessels (33 CFR 155.5067) may propose alternative frameworks when such vessel owner or operator believes that the national planning criteria are inappropriate for the areas in which the vessel intends to operate. The alternative planning criteria national guidelines afford a flexibility currently permitted by regulation. Therefore, they are not a rulemaking subject to notice and comment under the Administrative Procedure Act. We are providing these guidelines for the purpose of clarifying existing regulations.1

1 “Agencies rely on guidance to clarify regulatory text or statutes, to respond to the questions of affected parties in a timely way, and to inform the public about complex policy implementation topics.” GAO report on Regulatory Guidance Processes (April 2015).

On a related note, several commenters suggested that the language in the draft alternative planning criteria national guidelines is overly prescriptive or confusing, and therefore creates binding requirements with the “force and effect” of law. Examples include the use of definitions that either do not exist within, or are inconsistent with, the regulations. In consideration of these comments, and as noted above, we revised the alternative planning criteria national guidelines to remove language that could be perceived as inconsistent with or not covered by the regulations. The Coast Guard also removed the four draft enclosures.

D. Economic Assessment as an Element of the Request

Thirty-eight comments were received on the economic analysis to be submitted with the alternative planning criteria request, as set out in 33 CFR 155.5067. Several of these comments highlighted the potential for increased commodity and capital investment costs. Some of these comments also communicated that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines may result in significant increases in costs (for example, transportation of freight and fuel delivery by barges, transportation, home heating fuel costs of end users including native villages and other small communities in Alaska, oil spill equipment build-out costs, and contract and membership costs associated with the joining of multiple local spill response organizations as a solution to comply with the updated national guidelines).

Foremost, the Coast Guard appreciates the comments received concerning the economic impact of alternative planning criteria and associated national guidelines. The Coast Guard takes these comments very seriously, and will carefully evaluate the economic impact assessments that plan holders or Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators submit as part of their proposed alternative(s) in accordance with 33 CFR part 155.

E. Coast Guard Sector/COTP Involvement in the Review Process of Alternatives

Four comments noted that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines seem to remove the local Sector from decision making on proposed alternatives. The Coast Guard disagrees. While CG-MER is the ultimate decision making authority on proposed alternative planning criteria, local COTPs have a responsibility to review all proposed alternatives within their area of responsibility and provide an endorsement. This responsibility is set forth in 33 CFR 155.5067(a) for nontank vessels and the same responsibility applies in practice to tank vessels pursuant to 33 CFR 155.1065(f).

F. Local Area Committee Involvement in Review Process of Alternatives

The Coast Guard received 21 comments regarding the inclusion of local Area Committees as part of the process for reviewing proposed alternatives. Specifically, the concern is that the Coast Guard intends to route proposed alternatives via Area Committees for approval. In consideration of these comments, we have modified the language in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines that could have led to the misimpression that the Coast Guard intends to seek Area Committee approval. The Coast Guard changed this language to reflect that local Area Committees may be included in a COTP's evaluation of proposed alternatives. Area Committees, however, do not approve alternatives.

Additional comments questioned the legal authority under which Area Committees may be involved in the evaluation of alternatives. Area Committees were established as part of the National Planning and Response System created pursuant to Section 311 of the FWPCA (33 U.S.C. 1321(j)). Area Committees represent an essential element of oil spill and hazardous substance contingency planning. Further, there is nothing in the legislation that would limit or prevent the Coast Guard from consulting with Area Committees on proposed alternatives.

Two comments suggested that the COTP and local Area Committee should coordinate with the other federal and state entities including the Regional Response Team, National Strike Force Coordination Center, and the District Response Advisory Team, and the State of Alaska to ensure a comprehensive review of the gaps identified in alternative planning criteria submissions. The Coast Guard agrees, and notes the requirements for consultation with such entities in accordance with the National Oil and Hazardous Substance Pollution Contingency Plan (40 CFR part 300). The local Area Committee, under the direction of the Federal On-scene Coordinator (who is generally the COTP in the coastal zone), is responsible for directing the development of the Area Contingency Plan (ACP). In accordance with 40 CFR 300.210, ACPs are prepared by an Area Committee consisting of federal, state, and local agencies and in consultation with regional response teams and other appropriate entities. With respect to evaluating proposed alternatives, although consultation with Area Committees is not required by the VRP regulations, COTPs, in their discretion, may consult with Area Committees, which may include the review of gaps identified in proposed alternatives.

A related comment suggested that local Area Committees be informed by the Coast Guard when it receives a proposed alternative. As mentioned above, COTPs maintain the discretion to consult with the local Area Committee on proposed alternatives.

One commenter acknowledged the Coast Guard's stated intent to coordinate with Area Committees, District Response Advisory Teams, and Coast Guard Sectors in its review of proposed alternatives. However, the commenter suggested that it is not clear how these public involvement procedures will work in practice, especially when the Coast Guard has indicated that some alternatives may be approved in fewer than 90 days. While our regulations say that alternatives should be submitted to the Coast Guard 90 days before a vessel intends to operate under the proposed alternative, we recognize that not all proposed alternatives are the same. Some alternatives may warrant more analysis than others. In recognition of this, the alternative planning criteria national guidelines recommend submission of proposed alternatives at least 180 days before a vessel intends to operate under the proposed alternative.

G. Geographic Extent of Alternatives

Twenty-seven comments highlighted concern over the Coast Guard's intent to allow for alternatives that address a geographic area smaller than the entire extent of a COTP zone. Specifically, comments questioned the Coast Guard's authority to accept an alternative that only partially covers a COTP zone. Additionally, one comment forecasted a “compliance quagmire” if a patchwork of alternatives is allowed to exist within a COTP zone. The Coast Guard appreciates these concerns, but disagrees. The Coast Guard will continue to evaluate alternatives that adequately address areas where the NPC are inappropriate. The regulations specify that an alternative can be submitted for the geographic area(s) where the vessel intends to operate. See 33 CFR 155.1065(f) and 155.5067(a).

One commenter noted the belief that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines requirement to consider “any and all” environmental impacts of not meeting the NPC requirements is unreasonable, particularly for large and remote areas (e.g. Western Alaska). The Coast Guard agrees in part and disagrees in part. Previous alternative planning criteria policy guidance for tank vessels, as well as the existing regulations for nontank vessel response plans, require that proposed alternatives should, at a minimum, contain an environmental impact assessment (CG-543 Policy Letter 09-02 and 33 CFR 155.5067(b)). To keep within the scope of the regulatory requirements, the Coast Guard reworded the guidelines to emphasize that an environmental impact assessment should, at a minimum, be included in the submission of an alternative. Additionally, to ensure compliance with 33 CFR 155.1030 and 155.5030, proposed alternatives should highlight sensitive areas from the applicable Area Contingency Plan(s) in their environmental impact assessment.

One commenter proposed that Alaska be given its own planning standards given the physical, environmental, and geographic challenges unique to Alaska. We wish to point out that both the tank and nontank VRP regulations allow for the planning criteria to be tailored for a specific geographic location when the vessel owner or operator believes that the NPC are inappropriate for the areas they intend to operate.

H. Strategic Plan Replaced With Build-Out Plan

Seven comments reflected concern regarding the submission of a “strategic plan” as part of the proposed alternative(s). Additionally, some commenters asked how the Coast Guard would use and evaluate such a plan. We recognize the misunderstanding: We did not intend to refer to the company's strategic business plan, but rather a strategic plan for eventually meeting the NPC. In consideration of these concerns, we have revised the guidelines by replacing the phrase “strategic plan” with “build-out plan” to avoid the misimpression that industry business planning processes should be submitted as part of a proposed alternative. The build-out plan is a means by which a plan holder can address how they will build up response capability to meet the NPC. The Coast Guard has consistently stated that the intent of alternative planning criteria is to gradually build-up response capability in remote areas. See, Final Rule on “Nontank Vessel Response Plans and Other Response Plan Requirements” (78 FR 60099). The build-out plan is not a formal, organizational, strategic plan, but rather a detailed description of the measureable steps towards compliance with the NPC. The Coast Guard will review build-out plans in its review of submitted alternatives. Additionally, the Coast Guard will review achievement of build-out plan goals in its review of alternatives submitted for renewal.

I. Enforcement and Evaluation

The Coast Guard received 10 comments regarding the enforcement of alternative planning criteria, including concerns over the Coast Guard's ability to ensure compliance, especially in remote areas. The Coast Guard recognizes that remote areas may be challenging to frequent and regular verification efforts; nevertheless, at the discretion of the COTP, the Coast Guard will exercise its authority to verify compliance with approved alternatives.

One commenter recommended the Coast Guard add clarity as to what level of response capability, and future expanded capability, the Coast Guard will be seeking prior to approving future alternatives. The Coast Guard will evaluate the adequacy of response capabilities listed in alternatives, including expanded response capability addressed in the build-out plan. The Coast Guard's evaluation includes verifying that response resources are adequate in the areas intended, and that the alternative will provide an equivalent oil spill removal capacity. Additionally, alternatives are subject to equipment inspections, personnel training verifications, and exercise evaluations, including validation of build-out plan milestone achievement.

J. Policy Necessity

Two commenters questioned the need for the alternative planning criteria national guidelines, noting that the CG-543 Policy Letter 09-02 and MSIB 03-14 for Western Alaska were clear, concise, and simple. The CG-543 Policy Letter 09-02 was a national policy that only covered tank vessels. MSIB 03-14 was issued by the COTP for Western Alaska and specific to the Western Alaska COTP zone. The Coast Guard saw a need for a national policy that covers both tank and nontank vessels on alternative planning criteria.

One commenter noted that the Coast Guard's approval of an alternative plays a critical role in the level of environmental protection provided in the region. The Coast Guard agrees and notes that an environmental impact assessment is one of the elements that an owner or operator of a tank or nontank vessel should, at a minimum, include for the Coast Guard's consideration in determining whether to accept an alternative(s).

One commenter suggested that the policy reflect the stated regulation; that an alternative can be submitted for consideration any time that the vessel owner or operator feels the NPC are inappropriate or unattainable for reasons beyond their control or, when a vessel owner or operator can demonstrate that the alternative will provide an equivalent or superior level of response and/or protection as the NPC. The Coast Guard agrees in part and disagrees in part. The Coast Guard agrees that the alternative planning criteria may be submitted when an owner or operator believes the NPC are inappropriate for the area in which the vessel intends to operate. The Coast Guard does not agree, nor do the regulations in 33 CFR part 155 contemplate, the use of an alternative(s) where the NPC can be met.

K. Aleutian Islands Risk Assessment Consideration in Alternatives

One commenter noted that the Aleutian Islands Risk Assessment (AIRA) and the response model contained therein are better suited to the Alaskan region than compliance with the regulations. The Coast Guard disagrees. The AIRA presents one possible response model as an alternative planning approach for one region of the country. The Coast Guard will not dictate the prevention, response and/or mitigation strategies that a vessel owner or operator can propose where the NPC are inappropriate.

L. Applicability of Salvage and Marine Firefighting Resources in Alternatives

Two commenters recommended that salvage and marine firefighting resources should not be included in an alternative(s). The Coast Guard disagrees. Nothing in the regulations precludes the consideration of salvage and marine firefighting in a proposed alternative. Accordingly, in areas where salvage and marine firefighting national planning criteria are inappropriate, a vessel owner or operator may propose an alternative.

One commenter requested to know if the Coast Guard intends on requiring salvage and marine firefighting equipment to be listed in the Coast Guard response resource inventory (RRI). The Coast Guard appreciates the commenter's suggestion. The RRI is a voluntary option for certain response resource providers. The Coast Guard recommends that the response resources listed in alternatives be entered into the RRI.

M. Content of Proposed Alternatives Submitted to the Coast Guard

One commenter noted that the requirement to state each class of vessel and its associated worst case discharge volume and oil group is unnecessary. The Coast Guard agrees and modified the language in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines to reflect that an alternative may cover a single vessel or fleet of vessels and should state the vessel type(s) and oil volumes by type.

One commenter felt that vessel tracking, administration of vessel of opportunity programs, vessel of opportunity training programs, and the requirement to assure five vessels are available are cost prohibitive, inconceivable, and unattainable. A related comment recommended that the Coast Guard consider clarifying that the examples listed in the alternative national policy guidelines and enclosures are not requirements, but examples. The draft alternative planning criteria national guidelines did not require any of the above programs or strategies but rather presented them as examples of strategies. To avoid further confusion, however, the Coast Guard removed these examples from the alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

One commenter noted that an oil spill trajectory and fate analysis for the entire coastline of a vessel's route within a VRP geographic specific appendix is an unreasonable requirement, costly, and adds no value to a proposed alternative. We wish to make clear that while there is no specific requirement for trajectories or fate analyses, these are useful for the Coast Guard's evaluation of proposed alternatives and may appropriately be included in a plan holder's environmental impact assessment.

Two commenters noted a concern that documenting a vessel's track line information was overly burdensome and goes beyond what is required by the regulations. In consideration of these comments, we revised the alternative planning criteria national guidelines to remove language that could be perceived as inconsistent with the regulations. The revised language recommends that proposed alternatives include a general description of the intended vessel operations, such as track lines and/or intended vessel routes.

One commenter noted that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines should be written to ensure that exercises and verifications are conducted in conditions that reflect all intended seasonal operations. The Coast Guard notes that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines do not limit or otherwise prescribe the timing of exercises or verifications. The timing will ultimately be determined by the COTP as part of a risk-based decision process.

One commenter stated that continual improvement on alternatives, with a focus on response resources, should be considered when reviewing an alternative. The Coast Guard agrees and notes that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines include these considerations, especially as part of the build-out plan.

N. Submission Process for Alternatives

One commenter noted that the term “administrator” is not defined in the VRP regulations. The Coast Guard agrees and defines the term “Alternative Planning Criteria Administrator” in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

One commenter noted that the Coast Guard's timelines for accepting alternatives has not been in accordance with the regulatory timelines, and believes the Coast Guard should adhere to the review timeline in the regulations. The Coast Guard agrees that timely review is beneficial, and will work toward completing timely reviews of proposed alternatives. While the regulations in 33 CFR 155.1065(f) and § 155.5067(a) require submission of alternative planning criteria requests 90 days before the vessel intends to operate under a proposed alternative, the alternative planning criteria national guidelines recommend submission at least 180 days due to the myriad factors that must be evaluated, as well as the need for coordination and consultation in the review process.

One commenter noted that the Coast Guard excluded the provision for Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators to submit alternative proposals. The Coast Guard agrees and has added “Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators” to the submission process in the alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

One commenter noted that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines should address mechanisms to make revisions or improvements to an alternative after approval and/or an appeals process. The Coast Guard agrees. The alternative planning criteria national guidelines were updated to address revisions to submitted alternatives. Specifically, vessel owner or operators, or Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators, should submit any significant change that affects the information included in the accepted alternative(s) to the cognizant COTP. COTPs should endorse the proposed alternative and forward to Commandant Office of Marine Environmental Response Policy (CG-MER) through the cognizant CG District and Area staff offices.

O. Outreach

One commenter stated that, while the Coast Guard has held meetings with local stakeholders and communities in Western Alaska, the Coast Guard has not reached out to the wider shipping community that will also be affected by the alternative planning criteria national guidelines. The commenter recommended that the Coast Guard establish an industry working group that includes the wider community in order to seek constructive input into these important issues, especially given the large number of international trading vessels that transit the Great Circle Route through Western Alaska.

The Coast Guard agrees that input from stakeholders in every region is important and that is one of the reasons we requested public comment on the draft alternative planning criteria national guidelines. The Coast Guard is interested in continuing the discussion on improving the alternative planning criteria national guidelines and welcomes the opportunity to discuss the subject at local area committee meetings, regional response team meetings, and other relevant forums.

Two commenters supported improved communications between the Coast Guard and appropriate State environmental offices particular to response capability and alternatives. One commenter specifically mentioned that appropriate State environmental offices should be part of the approval and inspection/verification processes of alternatives. As Area Committee members, State environmental offices should be engaging with the Coast Guard on oil spill response planning, including response capability and alternatives. However, the Coast Guard is not abdicating its responsibility to evaluate, nor its decision making authority on the appropriateness of, proposed alternatives.

One commenter suggested that the current procedure for accepting proposed alternatives has been inconsistent and has not been an inclusive process specific to State environmental offices “as required by regulation.” We believe it is important to clarify that our regulations do not impose such a requirement, but note that the alternative planning criteria national guidelines mention that COTPs may, in their discretion, consult with Area Committees, of which State environmental offices are members. Concerning consistency in the procedure for accepting proposed alternatives, one of the goals of these alternative planning criteria national guidelines is to facilitate COTP consistency in the review of proposed alternatives. However, as noted above, not all proposed alternatives are the same; consequently, some proposals will generate more review and analysis than others.

One commenter suggested that engagement with the local communities and stakeholders should continue beyond that which has already taken place as part of the implementation of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines. The Coast Guard agrees. The Coast Guard is appreciative of the input received in the development of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines, and looks forward to continuing this dialogue at local area committee meetings, regional response team meetings, and other forums.

Three commenters suggested that it is essential that the Coast Guard monitor and report periodically to the public on the status of oil spill response readiness for a COTP zone. One commenter specifically requested that the Coast Guard require Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators or planholders to provide public summaries of the progress made toward closing response gaps and an evaluation of the prevention and risk reduction measures specified in the alternative. The Coast Guard COTPs, in coordination with the local area committee, can determine appropriate information sharing procedures to address oil spill response readiness. Additionally, the Coast Guard RRI may be a useful tool, where resource providers may voluntarily list response resources to facilitate this awareness, including the resources listed in alternatives.

One commenter suggested that the Coast Guard make available for public comment submitted alternatives, including alternatives submitted for renewal, before making its final approval determination. The Coast Guard is appreciative of this suggestion. However, we believe that initiating a public comment process for submitted alternatives would significantly impede the timely review of alternatives.

P. Miscellaneous Comments

One commenter expressed concern with the aggressive timeline associated with updating and re-submitting existing alternative planning criteria to align with the updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines. The Coast Guard agrees. Vessel owner or operators, or Alternative Planning Criteria Administrators, of currently existing alternative planning criteria may request an extension from the Coast Guard for up to six months beyond the date of expiration.

One commenter recommended that the Coast Guard post response contracts online and provide local communities with funding to assist with the outreach effort needed to gain local knowledge and expertise in the contract review of alternatives in VRPs. Posting response contracts online would create significant delays in the Coast Guard's review of submitted alternatives. This is because parties to the contract would have to redact business proprietary information, and the Coast Guard, as the entity that is posting the information, would have the responsibility of reviewing the redactions to ensure the content was acceptable for posting. We believe these additional steps would significantly impede the timely review of alternatives. Regarding the suggestion to provide funding to organizations to assist in outreach efforts, the Coast Guard does not have the legal authority to provide funding to organizations. However, engagement with local area committees, or regional response teams, offer a means to help build awareness of, and further strengthen, current strategies and response capabilities to address removal of a worst case discharge, or substantial threat of such a discharge.

Two commenters suggested that they believe competition created by accepted alternatives, and in general, competition within the oil spill prevention and response markets, is a good thing. This comment is outside the scope of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines as the purpose of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines is to provide guidance for the development and submission of alternatives with the goal of increasing response capacity.

One commenter offered that competition created in alternative planning criteria has led to response capability reductions. The Coast Guard has no authority to control market competition; therefore, this comment is outside the scope of the alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

Three commenters stated that additional resources not listed in a vessel response plan or alternative plan will not be made available to respond to an incident. These comments are outside the scope of the updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

One commenter suggested that VRP requirements, including alternatives, should include vessels on innocent passage. This comment is outside the scope of the updated alternative planning criteria national guidelines.

This notice is issued under the authority of 5 U.S.C. 552(a).

Joseph B. Loring, Captain, Office of Marine Environmental Response Policy.
[FR Doc. 2017-22333 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0413; FRL-9969-48-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve revisions to the State of West Virginia state implementation plan (SIP). The revisions update the effective date by which the West Virginia regulations incorporate by reference the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS), additional monitoring methods, and additional equivalent monitoring methods. This update will effectively add the following to the West Virginia SIP: The 2015 ozone NAAQS, monitoring reference and equivalent methods pertaining to fine particulate matter (PM2.5), Carbon Monoxide (CO), and course particulate matter (PM10), and it will revise the ozone monitoring season, the Federal Reference Method (FRM), the Federal Equivalent Method (FEM), and the Photochemical Assessment Monitoring Stations (PAMS) network. The SIP revision will also change a reference from the “West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection,” to the “Division of Air Quality.” EPA is approving these revisions in accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA).

DATES:

This rule is effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse written comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives such comments, it will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register and inform the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0413 at https://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the Web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Joseph Schulingkamp, (215) 814-2021, or by email at [email protected]

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

On June 13, 2017, the State of West Virginia through the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) submitted a formal revision to West Virginia's SIP pertaining to amendments of Legislative Rule, 45 CSR 8—Ambient Air Quality Standards. The SIP revision consists of revising the effective date of the incorporation by reference of 40 CFR parts 50 and 53.

II. Summary of SIP Revision and EPA Analysis

West Virginia has submitted this SIP revision to update the State's incorporation by reference of 40 CFR part 50, which contains the Federal NAAQS, and 40 CFR part 53, which contains the ambient air monitoring reference methods and equivalent reference methods. Currently, the version of 45 CSR 8 in the West Virginia SIP incorporates by reference 40 CFR parts 50 and 53 as effective on June 1, 2013; this SIP revision will update the effective date to June 1, 2016.

In the June 13, 2017 SIP submittal, WVDEP submitted amendments to the legislative rule which include the following changes: To section 45-8-1 (General), the filing and effective dates are changed to reflect the update of the legislative rule; to section 45-8-3 (Adoption of Standards), the effective dates for the incorporation by reference of 40 CFR parts 50 and 53 are changed; to section 45-8-4 (Inconsistency Between Rules), the reference to the “West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection,” is changed to the “Division of Air Quality.” West Virginia has amended 45 CSR 8 to revise the filing and effective dates of the rule to May 15, 2017 and June 1, 2017 respectively. The effective date of the incorporation by reference of 40 CFR parts 50 and 53 changed from June 1, 2013 to June 1, 2017. EPA finds the revised version of 45 CSR 8 with new effective dates incorporating by reference 40 CFR parts 50 and 53, as well as the changes to the reference of the state air agency, are in accordance with requirements in section 110 of the CAA.

This update will effectively add the following to the West Virginia SIP: The 2015 ozone NAAQS, monitoring reference and equivalent methods pertaining to PM2.5, CO, and PM10, and it will revise the ozone monitoring season to March 1st through October 31st, the FRM, the FEM, and the PAMS network.

III. Final Action

EPA is approving the amendments to Legislative Rule, 45 CSR 8—Ambient Air Quality Standards, into the West Virginia SIP pursuant to section 110 of the CAA. EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because EPA views this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipates no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of this Federal Register, EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revision if adverse comments are filed. This rule will be effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice unless EPA receives adverse comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives adverse comment, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect. EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

IV. Incorporation by Reference

In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing the update to West Virginia's Legislative Rule, 45 CSR 8, as effective on June 1, 2017. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region III Office (please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section of this preamble for more information). Therefore, these materials have been approved by EPA for inclusion in the SIP, have been incorporated by reference by EPA into that plan, are fully federally enforceable under sections 110 and 113 of the CAA as of the effective date of the final rulemaking of EPA's approval, and will be incorporated by reference by the Director of the Federal Register in the next update of the SIP compilation.1

1 62 FR 27968 (May 22, 1997).

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, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

In addition, 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 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, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

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 December 15, 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. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of this Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking action.

This action, to approve West Virginia's SIP revisions to update of the effective date by which the State regulations incorporate by reference the Federal NAAQS, additional monitoring methods, and additional equivalent monitoring methods, which effectively adds the 2015 ozone NAAQS and ambient air monitoring reference and equivalent methods pertaining to PM2.5, PM10, and CO, and changing the reference to the state air agency, 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, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Sulfur oxides.

Dated: September 27, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.

40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

Subpart XX—West Virginia 2. In § 52.2520, the first table in paragraph (c) is amended by revising the entries for 45-8-1 through 45-8-4 to read as follows:
§ 52.2520 Identification of plan.

(c) * * *

EPA-Approved Regulations in the West Virginia SIP State citation [Chapter 16-20 or 45 CSR] Title/subject State
  • effective date
  • EPA approval date Additional explanation/citation at 40 CFR 52.2565
    *         *         *         *         *         *         * [45 CSR] Series 8 Ambient Air Quality Standards Section 45-8-1 General 6/1/17 10/16/2017, [Insert Federal Register Citation] Filing and effective dates are revised. Section 45-8-2 Definitions 6/1/17 10/16/2017, [Insert Federal Register Citation] Previous Approval 9/22/2014. Section 45-8-3 Adoption of Standards 6/1/17 10/16/2017, [Insert Federal Register Citation] Effective date is revised. Section 45-8-4 Inconsistency Between Rules 6/1/17 10/16/2017, [Insert Federal Register Citation] Replaced “West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection” with “Division of Air Quality”. *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2017-22254 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2017-0079; FRL-9969-20-Region 4] Air Plan Approval; Florida; Interstate Transport (Prongs 1 and 2) for the 2010 1-hour NO2 Standard AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve a revision to the Florida State Implementation Plan (SIP), submitted by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, on February 3, 2017, addressing the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act) interstate transport (prongs 1 and 2) infrastructure SIP requirements for the 2010 1-hour Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS). The CAA requires that each state adopt and submit a SIP for the implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of each NAAQS promulgated by EPA, commonly referred to as an “infrastructure SIP.” Specifically, EPA is taking final action to approve Florida's February 3, 2017, SIP submission addressing prongs 1 and 2 to ensure that air emissions in the State do not significantly contribute to nonattainment or interfere with maintenance of the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS in any other state.

    DATES:

    This rule will be effective November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2017-0079. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information may not be publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically through www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Andres Febres of the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Mr. Febres can be reached by telephone at (404) 562-8966 or via electronic mail at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. Background

    By statute, SIPs meeting the requirements of sections 110(a)(1) and (2) of the CAA are to be submitted by states within three years after promulgation of a new or revised NAAQS to provide for the implementation, maintenance, and enforcement of the new or revised NAAQS. EPA has historically referred to these SIP submissions made for the purpose of satisfying the requirements of sections 110(a)(1) and 110(a)(2) as “infrastructure SIP” submissions. Sections 110(a)(1) and (2) require states to address basic SIP elements such as requirements for monitoring, basic program requirements, and legal authority that are designed to assure attainment and maintenance of the newly established or revised NAAQS. More specifically, section 110(a)(1) provides the procedural and timing requirements for infrastructure SIPs. Section 110(a)(2) lists specific elements that states must meet for the infrastructure SIP requirements related to a newly established or revised NAAQS. The contents of an infrastructure SIP submission may vary depending upon the data and analytical tools available to the state, as well as the provisions already contained in the state's implementation plan at the time in which the state develops and submits the submission for a new or revised NAAQS.

    Section 110(a)(2)(D) has two components: 110(a)(2)(D)(i) and 110(a)(2)(D)(ii). Section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) includes four distinct components, commonly referred to as “prongs,” that must be addressed in infrastructure SIP submissions. The first two prongs, which are codified in section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I), are provisions that prohibit any source or other type of emissions activity in one state from contributing significantly to nonattainment of the NAAQS in another state (prong 1) and from interfering with maintenance of the NAAQS in another state (prong 2). The third and fourth prongs, which are codified in section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(II), are provisions that prohibit emissions activity in one state from interfering with measures required to prevent significant deterioration of air quality in another state (prong 3) and from interfering with measures to protect visibility in another state (prong 4). Section 110(a)(2)(D)(ii) requires SIPs to include provisions ensuring compliance with sections 115 and 126 of the Act, relating to interstate and international pollution abatement.

    On January 22, 2010, EPA established a new 1-hour primary NAAQS for NO2 at a level of 100 parts per billion, based on a 3-year average of the 98th percentile of the yearly distribution of 1-hour daily maximum concentrations. See 75 FR 6474 (February 9, 2010). This NAAQS is designed to protect against exposure to the entire group of nitrogen oxides (NOX). NO2 is the component of greatest concern and is used as the indicator for the larger group of NOX. Emissions that lead to the formation of NO2 generally also lead to the formation of other NOX. Therefore, control measures that reduce NO2 can generally be expected to reduce population exposures to all gaseous NOX which may have the co-benefit of reducing the formation of ozone and fine particles both of which pose significant public health threats.

    States were required to submit infrastructure SIP submissions for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS to EPA no later than January 22, 2013. For comprehensive information on the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS, please refer to the Federal Register notice cited immediately above.

    In a notice of proposed rulemaking published on August 10, 2017 (82 FR 37384), EPA proposed to approve Florida's February 3, 2017, SIP submission concluding that its SIP adequately addresses prong 1 and prong 2 requirements for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS. Florida provided the following reasons for its determination: (1) The SIP contains state regulations that directly or indirectly control NOX emissions; (2) all areas in the United States are designated as unclassifiable/attainment for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS; (3) maximum 1-hour NO2 concentrations in states near Florida (Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, and South Carolina) are below the 2010 standard; (4) monitored design values for NO2 in the State are well below the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS and are trending downward; and (5) total NOX emissions in the State are also trending downward. The other applicable infrastructure SIP requirements for Florida for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS have been addressed in a separate rulemaking or will be addressed separately. On March 18, 2015 (80 FR 14019), EPA approved the portions of Florida's infrastructure SIP regarding the prevention of significant deterioration (PSD) permitting requirements of sections 110(a)(2)(C), prong 3 of D(i), and (J) for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS. On November 23, 2016 (81 FR 84479), EPA approved the portions of Florida's infrastructure SIP regarding sections 110(a)(2)(A), prong 4 of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i), section 110(a)(2)(D)(ii), sections 110(a)(2)(E)-(H), and sections 110(a)(2)(K)-(M). The portion of Florida's infrastructure SIP related to the ambient air quality monitoring and data system requirements of section 110(a)(2)(B) will be acted on in a separate action.

    The details of Florida's submission and the rationale for EPA's action are explained in the August 10, 2017, notice of proposed rulemaking. Comments on the proposed rulemaking were due on or before September 11, 2017. EPA did not receive any comments, adverse or otherwise.

    II. Final Action

    As described above, EPA is taking final action to approve Florida's February 3, 2017, SIP revision addressing prongs 1 and 2 of CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS. EPA is taking final action to approve this portion Florida's infrastructure SIP submission because Florida's SIP includes adequate provisions to prevent emissions sources within the State from significantly contributing to nonattainment or interfering with maintenance of this standard in any other state.

    III. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by December 15, 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 section 307(b)(2).

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

    Dated: September 28, 2017. Onis “Trey” Glenn, III, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Subpart K—Florida 2. Section 52.520(e) is amended by adding a new entry for “110(a)(1) and (2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS” at the end of the table to read as follows:
    § 52.520 Identification of plan.

    (e) * * *

    EPA-Approved Florida Non-Regulatory Provisions Provision State effective date EPA approval date Federal Register notice Explanation *         *         *         *         *         *         * 110(a)(1) and (2) Infrastructure Requirements for the 2010 1-hour NO2 NAAQS 2/3/2017 10/16/2017 [Insert citation of publication] Addressing Prongs 1 and 2 of section 110(a)(2)(D)(i) only.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22229 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0592; FRL-9969-40-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for Ozone AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Direct final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the Commonwealth of Virginia state implementation plan (SIP). This revision consists of an amendment to Virginia's SIP to incorporate by reference, the most recent federal ambient air quality standard for ozone. EPA is approving this revision in accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA).

    DATES:

    This rule is effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse written comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives such comments, it will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register and inform the public that the rule will not take effect.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0592 at http://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gavin Huang, (215) 814-2042, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Background

    On October 26, 2015 (80 FR 65292), EPA revised the primary and secondary national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for ozone to 0.070 parts per million (ppm). The primary and secondary ambient air quality standards are met at an ambient air quality monitoring site when the 3-year average of the annual fourth-highest daily maximum 8-hour average ozone concentration is less than or equal to 0.070 ppm.

    On July 25, 2016, the Commonwealth of Virginia through the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (VADEQ) submitted a formal revision to its SIP. The SIP revision seeks to incorporate the 2015 ozone NAAQS promulgated by EPA into the Virginia SIP.

    II. Summary of SIP Revision and EPA Analysis

    In the July 25, 2016 SIP submission, Virginia seeks to add regulation 9VAC5-30-57 “Ozone (8-hour 0.070 ppm)” to the Virginia SIP. Regulation 9VAC5-30-57 incorporates by reference the 2015 ozone NAAQS as promulgated by EPA and is consistent with the NAAQS set out in 40 CFR part 50. See 80 FR 65292 (October 26, 2015).

    Virginia's submittal seeks to incorporate the revised 2015 ozone NAAQS, as promulgated by EPA, into the approved Virginia SIP. Therefore, EPA finds the SIP submittal approvable pursuant to section 110 of the CAA.

    III. Final Action

    EPA is approving the July 25, 2016 Virginia SIP revision submittal which seeks to add regulation 9VAC5-30-57 “Ozone (8-hour 0.070 ppm)” to the Virginia SIP pursuant to section 110 of the CAA. Regulation 9VAC5-30-57 sets the level of the 8-hour ozone standard at 0.070 ppm, consistent with EPA's 2015 ozone NAAQS. EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because EPA views this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipates no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of this Federal Register, EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revision if adverse comments are filed. This rule will be effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice unless EPA receives adverse comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives adverse comment, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect. EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time.

    IV. General Information Pertaining to SIP Submittals From the Commonwealth of Virginia

    In 1995, Virginia adopted legislation that provides, subject to certain conditions, for an environmental assessment (audit) “privilege” for voluntary compliance evaluations performed by a regulated entity. The legislation further addresses the relative burden of proof for parties either asserting the privilege or seeking disclosure of documents for which the privilege is claimed. Virginia's legislation also provides, subject to certain conditions, for a penalty waiver for violations of environmental laws when a regulated entity discovers such violations pursuant to a voluntary compliance evaluation and voluntarily discloses such violations to the Commonwealth and takes prompt and appropriate measures to remedy the violations. Virginia's Voluntary Environmental Assessment Privilege Law, Va. Code Sec. 10.1-1198, provides a privilege that protects from disclosure documents and information about the content of those documents that are the product of a voluntary environmental assessment. The Privilege Law does not extend to documents or information that: (1) Are generated or developed before the commencement of a voluntary environmental assessment; (2) are prepared independently of the assessment process; (3) demonstrate a clear, imminent and substantial danger to the public health or environment; or (4) are required by law.

    On January 12, 1998, the Commonwealth of Virginia Office of the Attorney General provided a legal opinion that states that the Privilege Law, Va. Code Sec. 10.1-1198, precludes granting a privilege to documents and information “required by law,” including documents and information “required by federal law to maintain program delegation, authorization or approval,” since Virginia must “enforce federally authorized environmental programs in a manner that is no less stringent than their federal counterparts. . . .” The opinion concludes that “[r]egarding § 10.1-1198, therefore, documents or other information needed for civil or criminal enforcement under one of these programs could not be privileged because such documents and information are essential to pursuing enforcement in a manner required by federal law to maintain program delegation, authorization or approval.” Virginia's Immunity law, Va. Code Sec. 10.1-1199, provides that “[t]o the extent consistent with requirements imposed by federal law,” any person making a voluntary disclosure of information to a state agency regarding a violation of an environmental statute, regulation, permit, or administrative order is granted immunity from administrative or civil penalty. The Attorney General's January 12, 1998 opinion states that the quoted language renders this statute inapplicable to enforcement of any federally authorized programs, since “no immunity could be afforded from administrative, civil, or criminal penalties because granting such immunity would not be consistent with federal law, which is one of the criteria for immunity.”

    Therefore, EPA has determined that Virginia's Privilege and Immunity statutes will not preclude the Commonwealth from enforcing its program consistent with the federal requirements. In any event, because EPA has also determined that a state audit privilege and immunity law can affect only state enforcement and cannot have any impact on federal enforcement authorities, EPA may at any time invoke its authority under the CAA, including, for example, sections 113, 167, 205, 211 or 213, to enforce the requirements or prohibitions of the state plan, independently of any state enforcement effort. In addition, citizen enforcement under section 304 of the CAA is likewise unaffected by this, or any, state audit privilege or immunity law.

    V. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of Virginia 9VAC5-30-57 described in the amendment to 40 CFR part 52 set forth below. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region III Office (please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section of this preamble for more information). Therefore, these materials have been approved by EPA for inclusion in the SIP, have been incorporated by reference by EPA into that plan, are fully federally enforceable under sections 110 and 113 of the CAA as of the effective date of the final rulemaking of EPA's approval, and will be incorporated by reference by the Director of the Federal Register in the next update of the SIP compilation.1

    1 62 FR 27968 (May 22, 1997).

    VI. 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, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    The SIP is not approved to apply on any Indian reservation land as defined in 18 U.S.C. 1151 or in any other area where EPA or an Indian tribe has demonstrated that a tribe has jurisdiction. In those areas of Indian country, the rule does not have tribal implications and will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000).

    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, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

    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 December 15, 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. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of this Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking action.

    This action adding regulation 9VAC5-30-57 “Ozone (8-hour 0.070 ppm)” to the Virginia 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, Incorporation by reference, Ozone.

    Dated: September 22, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Subpart VV—Virginia 2. In § 52.2420, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by adding an entry for Section 5-30-57 in numerical order to read as follows:
    § 52.2420 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    EPA-Approved Virginia Regulations and Statutes State citation Title/subject State effective date EPA approval date Explanation [former SIP citation] *         *         *         *         *         *         * 9 VAC 5, Chapter 30 Ambient Air Quality Standards [Part III] *         *         *         *         *         *         * 5-30-57 Ozone (8-hour, 0.070 ppm) 06/01/2016 10/16/2017, [Insert Federal Register Citation] *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2017-22243 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0437; FRL-9969-32-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions from Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, Miscellaneous Plastic Parts Surface Coating, and Pleasure Craft Surface Coatings AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Direct final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's state implementation plan (SIP). The revision includes amendments to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's (PADEP) regulations and addresses the requirement to adopt reasonably available control technology (RACT) for sources covered by EPA's control techniques guidelines (CTG) standards for the following categories: Miscellaneous metal parts surface coating, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating, and pleasure craft surface coatings, as well as related cleaning activities. The SIP revision also amends regulations for graphic arts systems and mobile equipment repair and refinishing as well as making general administrative changes. This action is being taken under the Clean Air Act (CAA).

    DATES:

    This rule is effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse written comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives such comments, it will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register and inform the public that the rule will not take effect.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0437 at https://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gregory A. Becoat, (215) 814-2036, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On November 18, 2016, PADEP submitted a revision to the Pennsylvania SIP concerning the adoption of EPA's CTG for miscellaneous metal parts surface coating processes, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating processes, and pleasure craft surface coatings. Specifically, PADEP has amended 25 Pennsylvania Code (Pa. Code) Chapter 129 (relating to standards for sources) to address RACT and further reduce volatile organic compounds (VOC) emissions in Pennsylvania. In accordance with sections 172(c)(1), 182(b)(2)(A) and 184(b)(1)(B) of the CAA, Pennsylvania's SIP revision submittal establishes VOC emission limitations and other requirements consistent with the recommendations of EPA's 2008 Control Techniques Guidelines for Miscellaneous Metal and Plastic Parts Coatings (MMPP) (Publication No. EPA 453/R-08-003; September 2008) and Control Techniques Guidelines for Automobile and Light-Duty Truck Assembly Coatings for these sources in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Publication No. EPA 453/R-08-006).

    I. Background

    Ground level ozone is formed in the atmosphere by photochemical reactions between VOCs, nitrogen oxides (NOX), and carbon monoxide (CO) in the presence of sunlight. In order to reduce ozone concentrations in the ambient air, the CAA requires all nonattainment areas to apply controls on VOC and NOX emission sources to achieve emission reductions. Among effective control measures, RACT controls significantly reduce VOC and NOX emissions from major stationary sources. NOX and VOC are referred to as ozone precursors and are emitted by many types of pollution sources, including motor vehicles, power plants, industrial facilities, and area wide sources, such as consumer products and lawn and garden equipment. Scientific evidence indicates that adverse public health effects occur following exposure to ozone. These effects are more pronounced in children and adults with lung disease. Breathing air containing ozone can reduce lung function and inflame airways, which can increase respiratory symptoms and aggravate asthma or other lung diseases.

    RACT is defined as the lowest emission limitation that a particular source is capable of meeting by the application of control technology that is reasonably available considering technological and economic feasibility (44 FR 53761 at 53762, September 17, 1979). Section 182 of the CAA sets forth two separate RACT requirements for ozone nonattainment areas. The first requirement, contained in section 182(a)(2)(A) of the CAA, and referred to as RACT fix-up requires the correction of RACT rules for which EPA identified deficiencies before the CAA was amended in 1990. Pennsylvania previously corrected its deficiencies under the 1-hour ozone standard and has no further deficiencies to correct under this section of the CAA. The second requirement, set forth in section 182(b)(2) of the CAA, applies to moderate (or worse) ozone nonattainment area as well as to marginal and attainment areas in ozone transport regions (OTRs) established pursuant to section 184 of the CAA, and requires these areas to implement RACT controls on all major VOC and NOX emission sources and on all sources and source categories covered by a CTG issued by EPA.1 See CAA section 182(b)(2) and 184(b).

    1 CTGs are documents issued by EPA intended to provide state and local air pollution control authorities information to assist them in determining RACT for VOC from various sources. The recommendations in the CTG are based upon available data and information and may not apply to a particular situation based upon the circumstances. States can follow the CTG and adopt state regulations to implement the recommendations contained therein, or they can adopt alternative approaches. In either case, states must submit their RACT rules to EPA for review and approval as part of the SIP process. Pursuant to section 184(b)(1)(B) of the CAA, all areas in the OTR must implement RACT with respect to sources of VOCs in the state covered by a CTG issued before or after November 15, 1990.

    On July 18, 1997, EPA promulgated the health-based national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS) for ozone based on 8-hour average concentrations. 62 FR 38856. On April 30, 2004 (69 FR 23858), EPA designated 37 counties in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as 8-hour ozone nonattainment areas for the 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. On March 27, 2008, EPA revised the 8-hour ozone standard to a new 0.075 parts per million (ppm) level (73 FR 16436). On May 21, 2012, EPA finalized designations for the 2008 8-hour ozone NAAQS (77 FR 30087). EPA designated five areas in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as nonattainment. These areas include all or a portion of Allegheny, Armstrong, Berks, Beaver, Bucks, Butler, Carbon, Chester, Delaware, Fayette, Lancaster, Lehigh, Montgomery, Northampton, Philadelphia, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties. On October 26, 2015, EPA revised the 8-hour ozone standard to a new 0.070 ppm level (80 FR 65292). This rulemaking does not address SIP requirements under the 2015 8-hour ozone NAAQS. The entire Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is in the OTR established by Congress in CAA section 184 and is thus subject to implementing RACT for all sources of VOC in the state covered by a CTG issued before or after November 15, 2990 pursuant to CAA section 184(b)(1)(B).

    Section 172(c)(1) of the CAA provides that SIPs for nonattainment areas must include reasonably available control measures (RACM), including RACT, for sources of emissions. Pursuant to section 184(b)(1)(B) of the CAA, regardless of an area's nonattainment status, all areas in the OTR must implement RACT with respect to sources of VOCs in the Commonwealth covered by a CTG issued before or after November 15, 1990. In addition, pursuant to CAA section 184(b)(2), unless more stringent nonattainment area requirements apply, stationary sources in states or portions of a state within the OTR that emit at least 50 tons per year of VOCs shall be considered major stationary sources subject to requirements applicable to major stationary sources as if the area were classified as a Moderate nonattainment area including requirements for CTGs and RACT.

    Pennsylvania has implemented numerous RACT controls to meet the CAA RACT requirements under the 1-hour and 1997 8-hour ozone NAAQS. These RACT controls were promulgated in title 25 of the Pennsylvania Code, chapter 129, Standards for Sources. In accordance with CAA section 184(b)(1)(B), to achieve and maintain the 1997 and 2008 8-hour ozone NAAQS, the Commonwealth Pennsylvania must continue to adopt and implement VOC RACT emission control measures for source categories covered by all CTGs issued by EPA, as of 2014, including miscellaneous metal parts surface coating processes, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating processes, and pleasure craft surface coatings.

    CTGs are documents issued by EPA intended to provide state and local air pollution control authorities information to assist them in assessing RACT for VOC from various sources. Section 183(e)(3)(c) provides that EPA may issue a CTG in lieu of a national regulation as RACT for a product category where EPA determines that the CTG will be substantially as effective as regulations in reducing emissions of VOC in ozone nonattainment areas. The recommendations in the CTG are based upon available data and information and may not apply to particular situations based on unique circumstances. To date, EPA has issued 44 CTGs, providing guidelines for the control of VOC emissions from these types of sources. States can follow the CTG and adopt state regulations to implement the recommendations contained therein, or they can adopt alternative approaches. In either case, states must submit their RACT rules to EPA for review and approval as part of the SIP process.

    EPA developed the CTG for MMPP in September 2008 (Publication No. EPA 453/R-08-003) that provides guidelines with regard to feasible emission limitations and operating practices for a number of different surface coatings used within this large and diverse source category. The 2008 MMPP CTG recommends separate sets of emission limits for metal parts coatings, plastic parts coatings, automotive/transportation and business machine plastic parts, and pleasure craft, depending on the type of coating used by a particular source. The miscellaneous metal product and plastic parts surface coatings categories under section 183(e) of the CAA include the coatings that are applied to the surfaces of a varied range of metal and plastic parts and products. Such parts or products are constructed either entirely or partially from metal or plastic. These miscellaneous metal products and plastic parts include, but are not limited to, metal and plastic components of the following types of products as well as the products themselves: Fabricated metal products, molded plastic parts, small and large farm machinery, commercial and industrial machinery and equipment, automotive or transportation equipment, interior or exterior automotive parts, construction equipment, motor vehicle accessories, bicycles and sporting goods, toys, recreational vehicles, pleasure craft (recreational boats), extruded aluminum structural components, railroad cars, heavier vehicles, lawn and garden equipment, business machines, laboratory and medical equipment, electronic equipment, steel drums, metal pipes, and numerous other industrial and household products.

    The pleasure craft coating category does not include coatings that are a part of other product categories listed under Section 183(e) of the CAA for which CTGs have been published or included in other CTGs. For pleasure craft surface coatings, EPA took into account California regulations when developing the 2008 MMPP CTG. California was the only state at that time with regulations governing VOC emissions from pleasure craft surface coatings. After EPA finalized the 2008 MMPP CTG, the pleasure craft coatings industry asserted to EPA that three of the VOC emission limits in the CTG were too low considering the performance requirements of the pleasure craft coatings and that the VOC emission limits recommended did not represent RACT for the National pleasure craft coatings industry. On September 14, 2009, EPA was contacted by the pleasure craft coatings industry to reconsider some of the VOC emission limits recommended in the final 2008 MMPP CTG. In response, EPA issued a memorandum on June 1, 2010, entitled “Control Technique Guidelines for Miscellaneous Metal and Plastic Part Coatings—Industry Request for Reconsideration,” recommending that the pleasure craft industry work with state agencies during their RACT rule development process to assess what is reasonable for the specific sources regulated. EPA has stated that states can use the recommendations from the MMPP CTG to form their own determinations as to what constitutes RACT for pleasure craft coating operations. CTGs impose no legally binding requirements on any entity, including pleasure craft coating facilities. As stated in the memorandum, EPA will evaluate state-developed RACT rules and determine whether the submitted rules meet the RACT requirements of the CAA.

    II. Summary of SIP Revision and EPA Analysis

    On November, 18, 2016, PADEP submitted a SIP revision which adopted the recommendations contained in the 2008 MMPP CTG with respect to sources in the miscellaneous metal products coatings and plastic parts coatings product categories. For the pleasure craft coating industry, after evaluating what is reasonable for this source category, PADEP determined that three VOC content limits applicable to the source categories should be revised from the limits in the CTG to represent RACT for the industry. This is based on EPA's memorandum that the pleasure craft industry should work with state agencies during their RACT rule development process to assess what is reasonable for the specific sources regulated.

    The SIP revision includes an amendment to 25 Pa. Code Chapter 129—(relating to standards for sources) as follows: (1) Amended section 129.51(a)—(relating to general) in order to extend applicability; (2) added section 129.52(d)—“Control of VOC emissions from miscellaneous metal parts surface coating processes, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating processes and pleasure craft surface coatings,” in order to regulate VOC emissions from miscellaneous metal parts surface coating processes, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating processes and pleasure craft surface coatings; (3) amended section 129.52(g)—(relating to surface coating processes) in order to clarify record keeping and reporting requirements; (4) added section 129.52(k) in order to clarify the applicability of the requirements of section 129.52, Table I, Category 10 in 25 Pa. Code Chapter 129; (5) amended section 129.67—(relating to graphic arts systems) in order to extend applicability; and (6) amended section 129.75—(relating to mobile equipment repair and refinishing) in order to specify exceptions for those who apply surface coating to mobile equipment already subject to requirements of sections 129.52 and 129.52(d). More detailed information on these provisions as well as a detailed summary of EPA's review and rationale for proposing to approve these SIP revisions can be found in the Technical Support Document (TSD) for this action which is available on line at www.regulations.gov, Docket number EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0437.

    After evaluating this SIP revision submittal, EPA concludes that this SIP submittal which addresses the 2008 MMPP CTG and makes other related administrative changes, meets CAA requirements under sections 110, 172(c)(1), 182(b)(2)(A), and 184(b)(1) by adopting EPA's CTG and continuing to address and minimize VOC emissions in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as discussed in more detail in EPA's TSD for this rulemaking action. PADEP is adopting the requirements as recommended by the MMPPC CTG and adopting the pleasure craft industry recommendations for the following three coating categories: Antifouling Sealer/Tiecoat; Other Substrate Antifoulant; and Extreme High Gloss. For these three categories, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania reviewed industry data and determined that for the purpose of functionality, cost, and VOC emissions, the alternative limits adopted for these three coating categories constitute RACT. EPA concludes that Pennsylvania's approach is consistent with the guidance memorandum entitled, “Control Technique Guidelines for Miscellaneous Metal and Plastic Part Coatings—Industry Request for Reconsideration,” and therefore, concludes that these regulations reflect RACT given costs and VOC emissions. The revised VOC content limits for the pleasure craft surface coatings proposed by PADEP are expected to have a de minimis impact on the amount of VOC emission reductions from the implementation of the revised VOC limits due to having no facilities with the potential to emit VOC emissions for pleasure craft surface coatings.

    EPA notes that under 25 Pa. Code section 129.52d, PADEP is allowing the provisions of 25 Pa. Code section 129.52d to supersede the requirements of a RACT permit previously issued under 25 Pa. Code sections 129.91-129.95 if the permit was issued prior to January 1, 2017, to the owner or operator of a source subject to section 129.52d(a), except to the extent the RACT permit contains more stringent requirements. EPA further notes that the RACT permits issued under 25 Pa. Code sections 129.91-129.95 were issued for previous RACT determinations on a case-by-case basis; these permits were then submitted to EPA as source-specific SIP revisions and were previously acted on by EPA and would have been approved into the Pennsylvania SIP. If EPA approved those source-specific RACT determinations as meeting the requirements of RACT under the CAA, then the permits associated with those determinations were approved into the SIP as listed in 40 CFR 52.2020(d). The requirements of the source-specific RACT determination which EPA approved into the Pennsylvania SIP remain applicable requirements for the specific source unless and until Pennsylvania seeks to remove the limits from the SIP in accordance with CAA section 110(l). To the extent that the provisions of 25 Pa. Code section 129.52d are more stringent than those of a previous SIP-approved permit, PADEP will need to make a source-specific determination as to whether the requirements of the previous RACT permit apply, or those of section 129.52d, and submit that determination to EPA as a SIP revision in order to remove the previously approved permit from the SIP. Until such a SIP revision is made, EPA cannot remove the source-specific permits from the SIP and EPA is not taking such action in this rulemaking. Thus, the requirements of a previously SIP-approved permit are not superseded under the SIP. In accordance with section 110 of the CAA including 110(a) and 110(l), EPA determines that approval of this PADEP SIP revision will not interfere with reasonable further progress, attainment of any NAAQS or any other applicable CAA requirements.

    III. Final Action

    EPA is approving the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's November 2016 SIP revision submittal, which adopts RACT requirements for miscellaneous metal parts surface coating, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating, and pleasure craft surface coatings and which makes other related administrative changes, as the revision meets requirements in CAA sections 110, 172(c)(1), 182(b)(2)(A), and 184(b)(2). EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because EPA views this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipates no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of this Federal Register, EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revision if adverse comments are filed. This rule will be effective on December 15, 2017 without further notice unless EPA receives adverse comment by November 15, 2017. If EPA receives adverse comment, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect. EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

    IV. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of the Pennsylvania rule discussed in section II of this preamble. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through http://www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region III Office (please contact the person identified in the “For Further Information Contact” section of this preamble for more information). Therefore, these materials have been approved by EPA for inclusion in the SIP, have been incorporated by reference by EPA into that plan, are fully federally enforceable under sections 110 and 113 of the CAA as of the effective date of the final rulemaking of EPA's approval, and will be incorporated by reference by the Director of the Federal Register in the next update to the SIP compilation.2

    2 62 FR 27968 (May 22, 1997).

    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, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    In addition, 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 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, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

    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 December 15, 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. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of this Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking action. This action, which approves Pennsylvania's SIP revision adopting CTGs for miscellaneous metal parts surface coating, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating, and pleasure craft surface coatings, as well as general administrative changes related to cleaning activities, may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Incorporation by reference, Ozone, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: September 27, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Subpart NN—Pennsylvania 2. In § 52.2020, the table in paragraph (c)(1) is amended by: a. Revising the entries for Sections 129.51 and 129.52; b. Adding an entry in numerical order for Section 129.52d; and c. Revising the entries for Sections 129.67 and 129.75.

    The revisions and addition read as follows:

    § 52.2020 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    (1) * * *

    State citation Title/ subject State effective date EPA approval date Additional explanation/ § 52.2063 citation Title 25—Environmental Protection Article III—Air Resources *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 129.51 General 10/22/16 10/16/17, [Insert Federal Register citation] Revised Section 129.51(a). Section 129.52 Surface coating processes 10/22/16 10/16/17, [Insert Federal Register citation] Revised 129.52(g) and added Subsection 129.52(k). *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 129.52d Control of VOCs from Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating Processes, Miscellaneous Plastic Parts Surface Coating Processes and Pleasure Craft Surface Coatings 10/22/16 10/16/17, [Insert Federal Register citation] New section 129.52d is added. This section does not remove or replace any permits approved under paragraph (d) of this section. *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 129.67 Graphic arts systems 10/22/16 10/16/17, [Insert Federal Register citation] Revised Subsection 129.67(a)(1). *         *         *         *         *         *         * Section 129.75 Mobile equipment repair and refinishing 10/22/16 10/16/17, [Insert Federal Register citation] Revised Subsection 129.75(b)(1). Previous approval 8/14/00 (c)(148). *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2017-22241 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2017-0078; FRL-9969-42-Region 4] Air Plan Approval: Georgia; New Source Review and Permitting Updates AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Withdrawal of direct final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    Due to the receipt of an adverse comment, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is withdrawing the August 15, 2017, direct final rule that approves changes to Georgia's state implementation plan (SIP) related to new source review (NSR) permitting for prevention of significant deterioration (PSD). EPA will address the comment in a separate final action based upon the proposed rulemaking action, also published on August 15, 2017. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action.

    DATES:

    The direct final rule published at 82 FR 38605, on August 15, 2017, is withdrawn effective October 16, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    D. Brad Akers, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Mr. Akers can be reached via telephone at (404) 562-9089 or via electronic mail at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On August 15, 2017 (82 FR 38605), EPA published a direct final rule approving portions of several SIP revisions submitted by the State of Georgia, through the Georgia Department of Natural Resources' Environmental Protection Division (GA EPD), on December 15, 2011, July 25, 2014, and November 12, 2014. EPA took a direct final action to approve portions of the December 15, 2011, July 25, 2014, and November 12, 2014, submissions that made changes to the following GA EPD regulations: Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)—“Prevention of Significant Deterioration of Air Quality (PSD),” which applies to the construction and modification of any major stationary source in areas designated as attainment or unclassifiable as required by part C of title I of the CAA; and Rule 391-3-1-.03(8)—“Permit Requirements,” which applies generally to the permitting program, including permitting requirements that apply to the construction and modification of any major stationary sources in nonattainment areas as required by part D of title I of the CAA, referred to as nonattainment new source review.

    In the direct final rule, EPA explained that the Agency was publishing the rule without prior proposal because the Agency viewed the submittal as a non-controversial SIP amendment and anticipated no adverse comments. Further, EPA explained that the Agency was publishing a separate document in the proposed rules section of the Federal Register to serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revisions should an adverse comment be filed. EPA also noted that the rule would be effective generally 30 days after the close of the public comment period, without further notice unless the Agency received adverse comment by the close of the public comment period. EPA explained that if the Agency received such comments, then EPA would publish a document withdrawing the final rule and informing the public that the rule would not take effect. EPA specified, however, that if a comment were received on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment. It was also explained that all public comments received would then be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule, and that EPA would not institute a second comment period on this action.

    EPA received one adverse comment from a single Commenter on the portion of the direct final rule that made changes to Rule 391-3-1-.02(7) only, as submitted in the November 12, 2014, SIP revision. As a result of the comment received, EPA is withdrawing the direct final rule. EPA will address the comment in a separate final action based on the proposed action also published on August 15, 2017 (82 FR 38646). EPA will not open a second comment period for this action.

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, Incorporation by reference, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Sulfur oxides, Volatile organic compounds

    Dated: September 29, 2017. Onis “Trey” Glenn, III, Regional Administrator, Region 4. PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS Accordingly, the amendments to 40 CFR 52.570(c) published on August 15, 2017 (82 FR 38605), are withdrawn effective October 16, 2017.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22251 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R04-OAR-2017-0078; FRL-9969-43-Region 4] Air Plan Approval; Georgia: New Source Review Updates AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking final action to approve changes to the Georgia State Implementation Plan (SIP) to revise new source review (NSR) permitting regulations. EPA is approving a SIP revision submitted by the State of Georgia, through the Georgia Department of Natural Resources' Environmental Protection Division (GA EPD), on December 15, 2011, July 25, 2014, and November 12, 2014. This action is being taken pursuant to the Clean Air Act (CAA or Act).

    DATES:

    This rule is effective November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket Identification No. EPA-R04-OAR-2017-0078. All documents in the docket are listed on the www.regulations.gov Web site. Although listed in the index, some information may not be publicly available, i.e., Confidential Business Information or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically through www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. EPA requests that if at all possible, you contact the person listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section to schedule your inspection. The Regional Office's official hours of business are Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding Federal holidays.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    D. Brad Akers, Air Regulatory Management Section, Air Planning and Implementation Branch, Air, Pesticides and Toxics Management Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region 4, 61 Forsyth Street SW., Atlanta, Georgia 30303-8960. Mr. Akers can be reached via telephone at (404) 562-9089 or via electronic mail at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: I. What action is the Agency taking?

    On November 12, 2014, GA EPD submitted a SIP revision to EPA for approval that involves changes to Georgia's regulations to make them consistent with federal requirements for NSR permitting, among other changes. As described below, EPA is approving certain portions of this Georgia submission that makes changes to Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)—“Prevention of Significant Deterioration of Air Quality (PSD),” which applies to the construction and modification of any major stationary source in areas designated as attainment or unclassifiable as required by part C of title I of the CAA. Georgia's PSD regulations at Rule 391-3-1-.02(7) were last updated in the SIP on April 9, 2013. See 78 FR 21065. EPA is also approving Rule 391-3-1.03(8)—“Permit Requirements” at paragraph (g), which revises NNSR rules, and at paragraph (d) as explained in the August 15, 2017 (82 FR 38646) direct final rule.

    Georgia's November 12, 2014 SIP revision makes changes to the PSD regulations to reflect changes to the federal PSD regulations at 40 CFR 52.21, including provisions promulgated in the following federal rule: “Implementation of the New Source Review (NSR) Program for Particulate Matter Less Than 2.5 Micrometers (PM2.5): 1 Amendment to the Definition of `Regulated NSR Pollutant' Concerning Condensable Particulate Matter,” Final Rule, 77 FR 65107 (October 25, 2012) (hereinafter referred to as the PM2.5 Condensables Correction Rule). Georgia's November 12, 2014 SIP revision also makes changes to Georgia's PSD program to incorporate plantwide applicability limits (PALs) for greenhouse gases (GHGs) as allowed in the federal rule entitled “Prevention of Significant Deterioration and Title V Greenhouse Gas Tailoring Rule Step 3 and GHG Plantwide Applicability Limits.” See 77 FR 41051 (July 12, 2012) (hereinafter referred to as the GHG Step 3 Rule).2

    1 Airborne particulate matter (PM) with a nominal aerodynamic diameter of 2.5 micrometers or less (a micrometer is one-millionth of a meter, and 2.5 micrometers is less than one-seventh the average width of a human hair) are considered to be “fine particles” and are also known as PM2.5. Fine particles in the atmosphere are made up of a complex mixture of components including sulfate; nitrate; ammonium; elemental carbon; a great variety of organic compounds; and inorganic material (including metals, dust, sea salt, and other trace elements) generally referred to as “crustal” material, although it may contain material from other sources. The health effects associated with exposure to PM2.5 include potential aggravation of respiratory and cardiovascular disease (i.e., lung disease, decreased lung function, asthma attacks and certain cardiovascular issues). On July 18, 1997, EPA revised the NAAQS for PM to add new standards for fine particles, using PM2.5 as the indicator. Previously, EPA used PM10 (inhalable particles smaller than or equal to 10 micrometers in diameter) as the indicator for the PM NAAQS. EPA established health-based (primary) annual and 24-hour standards for PM2.5, setting an annual standard at a level of 15.0 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3) and a 24-hour standard at a level of 65 µg/m3 (62 FR 38652). At the time the 1997 primary standards were established, EPA also established welfare-based (secondary) standards identical to the primary standards. The secondary standards are designed to protect against major environmental effects of PM2.5, such as visibility impairment, soiling, and materials damage. On October 17, 2006, EPA revised the primary and secondary 24-hour NAAQS for PM2.5 to 35 µg/m3 and retained the existing annual PM2.5 NAAQS of 15.0 µg/m3 (71 FR 61236). On January 15, 2013, EPA published a final rule revising the annual PM2.5 NAAQS to 12 µg/m3(78 FR 3086).

    2 The PM2.5 Condensables Correction Rule and the GHG Step 3 Rule are discussed in more detail in the August 15, 2017 direct final rule, which is being withdrawn in the rules section of this Federal Register. See 82 FR 38605.

    At this time, EPA is not acting on the changes to Rule 391-3-1-.01—“Definitions,” at paragraphs (llll) and (nnnn), and Rule 391-3-1-.02(4)—“Ambient Air Standards,” as included in the November 12, 2014 submittal, because EPA approved them on July 31, 2015. See 80 FR 45609.

    EPA is also not acting on a change included in the November 12, 2014 submittal at Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)(a)(2)(iv). This provision would have incorporated by reference the federal definition of the term “subject to regulation,” but provided that incorporation of the federal regulation would be automatically rescinded if certain triggering events occurred. EPA previously disapproved the portion of a January 13, 2011 SIP revision that sought to include Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)(a)(2)(iv) in the SIP. See 81 FR 11438 (March 4, 2016). Because this provision is not part of Georgia's SIP, EPA is not acting on the State's proposed change to that provision.

    Finally, EPA is not acting on the changes included in the November 12, 2014 submittal regarding a new definition of the term “regulated NSR pollutant” at Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)(a)(2)(ix) because Georgia withdrew these changes from EPA's consideration in a December 1, 2016 letter.3

    3 In the December 1, 2016 letter, Georgia also withdrew changes regarding the term “regulated NSR pollutant” at Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)(a)(2)(ix). The December 1, 2016 letter is included in the docket for this action.

    II. Background

    On August 15, 2017 (82 FR 38646), EPA proposed to approve several changes to Georgia's SIP, including changes to Rule 391-3-1-.02(7) in the State's November 12, 2014, SIP revision adopting the PM2.5 Condensables Correction Rule and GHG PALs from the GHG Step 3 Rule. The proposed rule accompanied a direct final rule published on the same day in the Federal Register. See 82 FR 38605. EPA received an adverse comment on the portion of the rulemaking regarding the changes to Rule 391-3-1-.02(7) concerning GHG permitting. Accordingly, EPA is withdrawing the direct final action through a separate action published elsewhere in this issue of the Federal Register. EPA did not receive comments on Rule 391-3-1-.03(8)—“Permit Requirements” see the August 15, 2017, direct final action for more information concerning the approval of this rule.

    III. Response to Comment

    As stated previously, EPA received one adverse comment on the direct final rule. This comment is located in the docket for this action, and a summary of the comment and EPA's response is provided below.

    Comment: The Commenter “agree[d] with the action being taken,” but asserted that EPA should “require PSD permits for GHG only sources . . . and disapprove the Georgia SIP revision and put in place a FIP [Federal Implementation Plan] which would control GHGs of major stationary sources.” 4

    4 On January 2, 2011, GHG emissions were, for the first time, covered by the PSD and title V operating permit programs. See 75 FR 17004 (April 2, 2010). To establish a process for phasing in the permitting requirements for stationary sources of GHGs under the CAA PSD and title V programs, on June 3, 2010, the EPA published a final rule entitled “Prevention of Significant Deterioration and Title V Greenhouse Gas Tailoring Rule” (hereinafter referred to as the GHG Tailoring Rule). See 75 FR 31514. In Step 1 of the GHG Tailoring Rule, which began on January 2, 2011, the EPA limited application of PSD and title V requirements to sources of GHG emissions only if they were subject to PSD or title V “anyway” due to their emissions of pollutants other than GHGs. These sources are referred to as “anyway sources.” In Step 2 of the GHG Tailoring Rule, which applied as of July 1, 2011, the PSD and title V permitting requirements applied to some sources that were classified as major sources based solely on their GHG emissions or potential to emit GHGs. Step 2 also applied PSD permitting requirements to modifications of otherwise major sources that would increase only GHG emissions above the level in the EPA regulations. EPA generally described the sources covered by PSD during Step 2 of the GHG Tailoring Rule as “Step 2 sources” or “GHG-only sources.”

    Response: Georgia has a SIP-approved PSD program that includes the regulation of GHG-only sources under Step 2 of the GHG Tailoring Rule. See 76 FR 55572 (September 8, 2011). Georgia did not request removal of the Step 2 regulations from its SIP in the November 12, 2014 SIP revision; therefore, Step 2 permitting is outside the scope of this action. As it relates to GHG permitting, this action only incorporates the GHG PAL provisions from EPA's GHG Step 3 Rule into Georgia's SIP.

    Although Step 2 permitting is beyond the scope of this action, EPA notes that the United States Supreme Court invalidated EPA's regulation of Step 2 sources in Utility Air Regulatory Group (UARG) v. EPA, 134 S. Ct. 2427 (2014). In accordance with this decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit vacated the federal regulations that implemented Step 2 of the GHG Tailoring Rule. See Coalition for Responsible Regulation, Inc. v. EPA, 606 Fed. Appx. 6, 7 (D.C. Cir. 2015). Subsequently, EPA removed the vacated elements from its rules. See 80 FR 50199 (August 19, 2015). EPA therefore no longer has the authority to conduct PSD permitting for Step 2 sources, approve provisions submitted by a state for inclusion in its SIP providing this authority, or put a FIP in place to permit Step 2 sources.

    IV. Incorporation by Reference

    In this rule, EPA is finalizing regulatory text that includes incorporation by reference. In accordance with requirements of 1 CFR 51.5, EPA is finalizing the incorporation by reference of Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)—“Prevention of Significant Deterioration” at subparagraph (a)(1), effective October 14, 2014,5 which revises PSD rules, and Rule 391-3-1-.03(8) “Permit Requirements” at paragraph (g), effective September 13, 2011, which revises NNSR rules, and at paragraph (d), effective August 1, 2013, which revises generally applicable permitting requirements. EPA has made, and will continue to make, these materials generally available through www.regulations.gov and/or at the EPA Region 4 Office (please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section of this preamble for more information). Therefore, these materials have been approved by EPA for inclusion in the State implementation plan, have been incorporated by reference by EPA into that plan, are fully federally enforceable under sections 110 and 113 of the CAA as of the effective date of the final rulemaking of EPA's approval, and will be incorporated by reference by the Director of the Federal Register in the next update to the SIP compilation.6

    5 See Section I, above, for additional detail.

    6 62 FR 27968 (May 22, 1997).

    V. Final Action

    EPA is approving the aforementioned changes to the Georgia SIP regarding the PM2.5 Condensables Correction Rule and GHG PALs from the GHG Step 3 Rule, submitted on November 12, 2014, because they are consistent with the CAA and its implementing regulations.

    VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the Act and applicable Federal regulations. See 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. 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 mandates or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by December 15, 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 section 307(b)(2).

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, Incorporation by reference, Lead, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Particulate matter, Sulfur oxides, Volatile organic compounds.

    Dated: September 29, 2017. Onis “Trey” Glenn, III, Regional Administrator, Region 4.

    40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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

    42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

    Subpart L—Georgia 2. Section 52.570(c) is amended by revising the entries “391-3-1-.02(7)” and “391-3-1-.03” to read as follows:
    § 52.570 Identification of plan.

    (c) * * *

    EPA-Approved Georgia Regulations State citation Title/subject State effective date EPA approval date Explanation *         *         *         *         *         *         * 391-3-1-.02(7) Prevention of Significant Deterioration of Air Quality (PSD) 10/14/2014 10/16/2017, [Insert citation of publication] EPA is not incorporating the revision to Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(7)(a)(2)(iv) included in Georgia's November 12, 2014 SIP submittal because that provision is not in the SIP. See March 4, 2016 publication. The version of Georgia Rule 391-3-1-.02(7) in the SIP does not incorporate by reference: (1) The provisions amended in the Ethanol Rule to exclude facilities that produce ethanol through a natural fermentation process from the definition of “chemical process plants” in the major NSR source permitting program found at 40 CFR 52.21(b)(1)(i)(a) and (b)(1)(iii)(t), or (2) the provisions at 40 CFR 52.21(b)(2)(v) and (b)(3)(iii)(c) that were stayed indefinitely by the Fugitive Emissions Interim Rule, see March 30, 2011 publication. *         *         *         *         *         *         * 391-3-1-.03 Permits 8/1/2013 10/16/2017, [Insert citation of publication] Changes specifically to (8)—Permit Requirements at (d) (state effective August 1, 2013) and (g) (state effective September 13, 2011). *         *         *         *         *         *         *
    [FR Doc. 2017-22250 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 180 [EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0392; FRL-9966-73] Fenpicoxamid; Pesticide Tolerances AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This regulation establishes tolerances for residues of fenpicoxamid (XDE 777) in or on banana, rye, and wheat. Dow AgroSciences LLC requested these tolerances under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA).

    DATES:

    This regulation is effective October 16, 2017. Objections and requests for hearings must be received on or before December 15, 2017, and must be filed in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178 (see also Unit I.C. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION).

    ADDRESSES:

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0392, is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pesticide Programs Regulatory Public Docket (OPP Docket) in the Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPP Docket is (703) 305-5805. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael L. Goodis, Registration Division (7505P), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; main telephone number: (703) 305-7090; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

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

    • Crop production (NAICS code 111).

    • Animal production (NAICS code 112).

    • Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

    • Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

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

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

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

    Under FFDCA section 408(g), 21 U.S.C. 346a, any person may file an objection to any aspect of this regulation and may also request a hearing on those objections. You must file your objection or request a hearing on this regulation in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, you must identify docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0392 in the subject line on the first page of your submission. All objections and requests for a hearing must be in writing, and must be received by the Hearing Clerk on or before December 15, 2017. Addresses for mail and hand delivery of objections and hearing requests are provided in 40 CFR 178.25(b).

    In addition to filing an objection or hearing request with the Hearing Clerk as described in 40 CFR part 178, please submit a copy of the filing (excluding any Confidential Business Information (CBI)) for inclusion in the public docket. Information not marked confidential pursuant to 40 CFR part 2 may be disclosed publicly by EPA without prior notice. Submit the non-CBI copy of your objection or hearing request, identified by docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0392, by one of the following methods:

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

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

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

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

    II. Summary of Petitioned-For Tolerance

    In the Federal Register of December 20, 2016 (81 FR 92758) (FRL-9956-04), EPA issued a document pursuant to FFDCA section 408(d)(3), 21 U.S.C. 346a(d)(3), announcing the filing of a pesticide petition (PP 5E8440) by Dow AgroSciences LLC, 9330 Zionsville Rd, Indianapolis, IN 46268. The petition requested that 40 CFR part 180 be amended by establishing tolerances for residues of the fungicide fenpicoxamid (XDE- 777) in or on banana at 0.1 parts per million (ppm), rye, grain and wheat, grain at 0.7 ppm; and residues of fenpicoxamid and its metabolite X12326349 expressed as fenpicoxamid equivalents in or on meat and fat from cattle, goats, and sheep at 0.01 ppm; and meat byproducts of cattle, goats, and sheep at 0.02 ppm. That document referenced a summary of the petition prepared by Dow AgroSciences LLC, the registrant, which is available in the docket, http://www.regulations.gov. There were no comments received in response to the notice of filing. Based upon review of the data supporting the petition, EPA is establishing tolerances as follows: 0.15 ppm for banana and 0.60 ppm for rye, grain and wheat, grain. In addition, EPA has concluded that no tolerances are needed for livestock commodities at this time. The reason for these changes are explained in Unit IV.C.

    III. Aggregate Risk Assessment and Determination of Safety

    Section 408(b)(2)(A)(i) of FFDCA allows EPA to establish a tolerance (the legal limit for a pesticide chemical residue in or on a food) only if EPA determines that the tolerance is “safe.” Section 408(b)(2)(A)(ii) of FFDCA defines “safe” to mean that “there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue, including all anticipated dietary exposures and all other exposures for which there is reliable information.” This includes exposure through drinking water and in residential settings, but does not include occupational exposure. Section 408(b)(2)(C) of FFDCA requires EPA to give special consideration to exposure of infants and children to the pesticide chemical residue in establishing a tolerance and to “ensure that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue. . . .”

    Consistent with FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D), and the factors specified in FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D), EPA has reviewed the available scientific data and other relevant information in support of this action. EPA has sufficient data to assess the hazards of and to make a determination on aggregate exposure for fenpicoxamid including exposure resulting from the tolerances established by this action. EPA's assessment of exposures and risks associated with fenpicoxamid follows.

    A. Toxicological Profile

    EPA has evaluated the available toxicity data and considered its validity, completeness, and reliability as well as the relationship of the results of the studies to human risk. EPA has also considered available information concerning the variability of the sensitivities of major identifiable subgroups of consumers, including infants and children. Fenpicoxamid has no significant acute toxicity via oral, dermal or inhalation route of exposure. Moreover, it is not a skin irritant and does not cause skin sensitization.

    Liver effects were consistently observed in mice regardless of duration; however, the severity, magnitude, and diversity of the liver response progressed from adaptive in subchronic exposures to adverse in chronic exposures. Mice exposed to fenpicoxamid in the diet for 80 weeks experienced liver weight increase accompanied by microscopic changes including very slight to moderate centrilobular/midzonal hepatocellular hypertrophy with altered tinctorial properties (increased cytoplasmic eosinophilia), vacuolization consistent with fatty change, and very slight hepatocyte necrosis. These liver effects also coincided with an increased incidence of microscopic calculi within the gallbladder in both sexes. A treatment-related increase in liver tumors were seen in male mice and is the basis for the Agency's classification of the chemical as “Suggestive Evidence of Carcinogenic Potential”. The Agency determined that a non-linear approach adequately accounted for all chronic toxicity, including carcinogenicity, that could result from chronic exposure to fenpicoxamid and, therefore, quantification of carcinogenic potential was not required. This decision was based on the following considerations: (1) There was limited evidence of carcinogenicity in the fenpicoxamid toxicity database; (2) the concern for mutagenicity and genotoxicity is low; and (3) there was no evidence of carcinogenicity at doses at or below the chronic reference dose.

    Rats were likewise only adversely affected by treatment following chronic exposures. Chronic dietary exposure elicited treatment-related changes in the kidneys (increased severity of chronic progressive glomerulonephropathy) that were considered detrimental to the rat's health. However, unlike mice, chronic exposure did not elicit an increase in neoplasms in any tissue. Rabbits and dogs tolerated oral exposure up to doses of 495 and 1,115 milligrams/kilogram/day (mg/kg/day), respectively, without any signs of deteriorating health. There was no evidence of fetal susceptibility in rats or rabbits, or offspring susceptibility in rats. None of the available studies produced evidence of treatment-induced immunotoxicity or neurotoxicity.

    Specific information on the studies received and the nature of the adverse effects caused by fenpicoxamid as well as the no-observed-adverse-effect-level (NOAEL) and the lowest-observed-adverse-effect-level (LOAEL) from the toxicity studies can be found at http://www.regulations.gov in document “Fenpicoxamid (XDE-777): Human Health Risk Assessment to Establish Tolerances for Bananas, Wheat, and Rye Commodities Without U.S. Registration” at pages 10 through 20 in docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0392.

    B. Toxicological Points of Departure/Levels of Concern

    Once a pesticide's toxicological profile is determined, EPA identifies toxicological points of departure (POD) and levels of concern to use in evaluating the risk posed by human exposure to the pesticide. For hazards that have a threshold below which there is no appreciable risk, the toxicological POD is used as the basis for derivation of reference values for risk assessment. PODs are developed based on a careful analysis of the doses in each toxicological study to determine the dose at which no adverse effects are observed (the NOAEL) and the lowest dose at which adverse effects of concern are identified (the LOAEL). Uncertainty/safety factors are used in conjunction with the POD to calculate a safe exposure level—generally referred to as a population-adjusted dose (PAD) or a reference dose (RfD)—and a safe margin of exposure (MOE). For non-threshold risks, the Agency assumes that any amount of exposure will lead to some degree of risk. Thus, the Agency estimates risk in terms of the probability of an occurrence of the adverse effect expected in a lifetime. For more information on the general principles EPA uses in risk characterization and a complete description of the risk assessment process, see http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/factsheets/riskassess.htm.

    A summary of the toxicological endpoints for fenpicoxamid used for human risk assessment is shown in the Table of this unit.

    Table—Summary of Toxicological Doses and Endpoints for Fenpicoxamid for Use in Human Health Risk Assessments Exposure/scenario Point of departure Uncertainty/FQPA safety factors RfD, PAD, level of concern for risk assessment Study and toxicological effects Acute Dietary (General Population, including Infants and Children) There were no effects in the toxicity database that could be attributed to a single dose; therefore, an acute POD was not identified. Chronic Dietary (All Populations) NOAEL = 40 mg/kg/day UFA = 10x UFH = 10x FQPA SF = 1x cRfD = 0.40 mg/kg/day cPAD = 0.40 mg/kg/day Carcinogenicity study—mouse. MRID 49731126. LOAEL = 156 and 388 mg/kg/day for males and females, respectively, based on treatment-related adverse liver effects in males (increased liver weight, hypertrophy, hepatocyte necrosis and fatty change) and females (increased liver weight, hypertrophy and fatty change) and gall bladder calculi. Cancer (oral, dermal, inhalation) “Suggestive Evidence of Carcinogenic Potential” based on the presence of liver tumors in male mice only. The cRfD is protective of carcinogenic effects. Point of Departure (POD) = A data point or an estimated point that is derived from observed dose-response data and used to mark the beginning of extrapolation to determine risk associated with lower environmentally relevant human exposures. NOAEL = no observed adverse effect level. LOAEL = lowest observed adverse effect level. UF = uncertainty factor. UFA = extrapolation from animal to human (interspecies). UFH = potential variation in sensitivity among members of the human population (intraspecies). FQPA SF = FQPA Safety Factor. PAD = population adjusted dose (a = acute, c = chronic). RfD = reference dose. C. Exposure Assessment

    1. Dietary exposure from food and feed uses. In evaluating dietary exposure to fenpicoxamid, EPA assessed dietary exposures from fenpicoxamid in food as follows:

    i. Acute exposure. Quantitative acute dietary exposure and risk assessments are performed for a food-use pesticide, if a toxicological study has indicated the possibility of an effect of concern occurring as a result of a 1-day or single exposure. No such effects were identified in the toxicological studies for fenpicoxamid; therefore, a quantitative acute dietary exposure assessment is unnecessary.

    ii. Chronic exposure. In conducting the chronic dietary exposure assessment, EPA used the food consumption data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA's) 2003-2008 food consumption data from the USDA's National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, What We Eat in America, (NHANES/WWEIA). As to residue levels in food, EPA used tolerance-level residues and 100% crop treated.

    iii. Cancer. As discussed in Unit III.A., EPA has concluded that a nonlinear RfD approach is appropriate for assessing cancer risk to fenpicoxamid.

    iv. Anticipated residue and percent crop treated (PCT) information. EPA did not use anticipated residues and/or PCT information in the dietary assessment for fenpicoxamid. Tolerance-level residues and 100% CT were assumed for all food commodities.

    2. Dietary exposure from drinking water. Because there are no domestic uses of fenpicoxamid registered in the United States, there will not be residues of fenpicoxamid in drinking water. Therefore, a drinking water assessment is not required.

    3. From non-dietary exposure. The term “residential exposure” is used in this document to refer to non-occupational, non-dietary exposure (e.g., for lawn and garden pest control, indoor pest control, termiticides, and flea and tick control on pets). Fenpicoxamid is not registered for any specific use patterns that would result in residential exposure.

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

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

    D. Safety Factor for Infants and Children

    1. In general. Section 408(b)(2)(C) of FFDCA provides that EPA shall apply an additional tenfold (10X) margin of safety for infants and children in the case of threshold effects to account for prenatal and postnatal toxicity and the completeness of the database on toxicity and exposure unless EPA determines based on reliable data that a different margin of safety will be safe for infants and children. This additional margin of safety is commonly referred to as the Food Quality Protection Act Safety Factor (FQPA SF). In applying this provision, EPA either retains the default value of 10X, or uses a different additional safety factor when reliable data available to EPA support the choice of a different factor.

    2. Prenatal and postnatal sensitivity. Developmental toxicity was not observed in the rat or rabbit developmental studies and, no reproductive or offspring effects were observed in the reproduction toxicity study. As a result, EPA concluded there is low concern for prenatal or postnatal sensitivity from fenpicoxamid exposure.

    3. Conclusion. EPA has determined that reliable data show the safety of infants and children would be adequately protected if the FQPA SF were reduced to 1X for all exposure scenarios. That decision is based on the following findings:

    i. The toxicity database for fenpicoxamid is complete.

    ii. There is no indication that fenpicoxamid is a neurotoxic chemical and there is no need for a developmental neurotoxicity study or additional UFs to account for neurotoxicity.

    iii. There is no evidence that fenpicoxamid results in increased susceptibility in in utero rats or rabbits in the prenatal developmental studies or in young rats in the 2-generation reproduction study.

    iv. There are no residual uncertainties identified in the exposure databases.

    E. Aggregate Risks and Determination of Safety

    EPA determines whether acute and chronic dietary pesticide exposures are safe by comparing aggregate exposure estimates to the acute PAD (aPAD) and chronic PAD (cPAD). For linear cancer risks, EPA calculates the lifetime probability of acquiring cancer given the estimated aggregate exposure. Short-, intermediate-, and chronic-term risks are evaluated by comparing the estimated aggregate food, water, and residential exposure to the appropriate PODs to ensure that an adequate MOE exists.

    1. Acute risk. An acute aggregate risk assessment takes into account acute exposure estimates from dietary consumption of food and drinking water. No adverse effect resulting from a single oral exposure was identified and no acute dietary endpoint was selected. Therefore, fenpicoxamid is not expected to pose an acute risk.

    2. Chronic risk. Using the exposure assumptions described in this unit for chronic exposure, EPA has concluded that chronic exposure to fenpicoxamid from food for the highest exposed population subgroup, children 1-2 years of age, is 0.002737 mg/kg/day or <1.0% of the cPAD. The chronic dietary exposure estimate for the general population is 0.001022 mg/kg/day or <1.0% of the cPAD.

    3. Short-term and intermediate-term risk. Because fenpicoxamid is not registered for any uses that may result in residential exposure, fenpicoxamid is not expected to cause any short-term or intermediate-term risk not already accounted for in the Agency's assessment of chronic risk.

    4. Aggregate cancer risk for U.S. population. Based on the Agency's assessment of chronic risk, the Agency concludes that fenpicoxamid is not expected to pose a cancer risk.

    5. Determination of safety. Based on these risk assessments, EPA concludes that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to the general population, or to infants and children from aggregate exposure to fenpicoxamid residues.

    IV. Other Considerations A. Analytical Enforcement Methodology

    Adequate enforcement methodology (high-performance liquid chromatography method with tandem mass spectrometry detection (LC/MS/MS), Method No. 120615) is available to enforce the tolerance expression.

    B. International Residue Limits

    In making its tolerance decisions, EPA seeks to harmonize U.S. tolerances with international standards whenever possible, consistent with U.S. food safety standards and agricultural practices. EPA considers the international maximum residue limits (MRLs) established by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Codex), as required by FFDCA section 408(b)(4). The Codex Alimentarius is a joint United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization food standards program, and it is recognized as an international food safety standards-setting organization in trade agreements to which the United States is a party. EPA may establish a tolerance that is different from a Codex MRL; however, FFDCA section 408(b)(4) requires that EPA explain the reasons for departing from the Codex level.

    Codex has not established any MRLs for residues of fenpicoxamid.

    C. Revisions to Petitioned-For Tolerances

    EPA is establishing tolerances for wheat, grain and rye, grain (at 0.60 ppm) that differ from what the petition requested (0.7 ppm). The petitioner included only wheat grain residues for individual growing season/area combinations. Including all residues for wheat grain in the OECD MRL calculator in accordance with Agency policy results in a tolerance level of 0.60 ppm. Because the wheat grain data can be used to assess residues in rye grain, the Agency is establishing a tolerance at 0.60 ppm for rye grain as well. Finally, although the notice of filing and the petition summary indicate that the petitioner was seeking tolerances for wheat and rye, the section of the petition that listed actual requested tolerances more narrowly sought only “wheat, grain” and “rye, grain” tolerances because those are the forms in which the wheat and rye will be imported. Accordingly, EPA is establishing tolerances for the commodities “wheat, grain” and “rye, grain”.

    EPA is establishing a different tolerance level for banana than what was requested based on available residue data and the OECD calculator, and in order to harmonize with Canada's MRL.

    EPA is not establishing any of the petitioned-for tolerances for livestock commodities. Based on the results of the livestock feeding studies, the residues of concern for livestock commodities (fenpicoxamid and X12326349) would be below the limit of quantification (LOQ) of the enforcement analytical method. Therefore, the Agency concludes, as indicated in 40 CFR 180.6(a)(3), that there is no reasonable expectation of finite residues and no tolerances are needed for livestock commodities at this time.

    V. Conclusion

    Therefore, tolerances are established for residues of fenpicoxamid and its metabolites and degradates, in or on banana at 0.15 ppm, and rye and wheat grain at 0.60 ppm.

    VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

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

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

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

    VII. Congressional Review Act

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

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 180

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

    Dated: September 6, 2017. Richard P. Keigwin, Jr., Acting Director, Office of Pesticide Programs.

    Therefore, 40 CFR chapter I is amended as follows:

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

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

    2. Add § 180.109 to subpart C to read as follows:
    §  180.109 Fenpicoxamid; Tolerances for residues.

    (a) General. Tolerances are established for residues of fenpicoxamid including its metabolites and degradates, in or on the commodities in the table below. Compliance with the tolerance levels for fenpicoxamid is to be determined by measuring only fenpicoxamid ([[4-methoxy-2-[[[(3S,7R,8R,9S)-9-methyl-8-(2-methyl-1-oxopropoxy)-2,6-dioxo-7-(phenylmethyl)-1,5-dioxonan-3-yl]amino]carbonyl]-3-pyridinyl]oxy]methyl 2-methylpropanoate) in or on the commodity.

    Commodity Parts per
  • million
  • Banana* 0.15 Wheat, grain* 0.60 Rye, grain* 0.60 *There are no U.S. registrations for use of fenpicoxamid on this commodity.

    (b) Section 18 emergency exemptions. [Reserved]

    (c) Tolerances with regional registrations. [Reserved]

    (d) Indirect or inadvertent residues. [Reserved]

    [FR Doc. 2017-22357 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 180 [EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0142; FRL-9966-13] Triflumezopyrim; Pesticide Tolerances AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Final rule.

    SUMMARY:

    This regulation establishes tolerances for residues of triflumezopyrim in or on rice, grain and rice, hulls. E.I. Dupont de Nemours and Company requested these tolerances under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA).

    DATES:

    This regulation is effective October 16, 2017. Objections and requests for hearings must be received on or before December 15, 2017, and must be filed in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178 (see also Unit I.C. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION).

    ADDRESSES:

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0142, is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pesticide Programs Regulatory Public Docket (OPP Docket) in the Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPP Docket is (703) 305-5805. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michael L. Goodis, Registration Division (7505P), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; main telephone number: (703) 305-7090; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

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

    • Crop production (NAICS code 111).

    • Animal production (NAICS code 112).

    • Food manufacturing (NAICS code 311).

    • Pesticide manufacturing (NAICS code 32532).

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

    You may access a frequently updated electronic version of EPA's tolerance regulations at 40 CFR part 180 through the Government Printing Office's e-CFR site at http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?&c=ecfr&tpl=/ecfrbrowse/Title40/40tab_02.tpl. To access the OCSPP test guidelines referenced in this document electronically, please go to http://www.epa.gov/ocspp and select “Test Methods and Guidelines.”

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

    Under FFDCA section 408(g), 21 U.S.C. 346a, any person may file an objection to any aspect of this regulation and may also request a hearing on those objections. You must file your objection or request a hearing on this regulation in accordance with the instructions provided in 40 CFR part 178. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, you must identify docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0142 in the subject line on the first page of your submission. All objections and requests for a hearing must be in writing, and must be received by the Hearing Clerk on or before December 15, 2017. Addresses for mail and hand delivery of objections and hearing requests are provided in 40 CFR 178.25(b).

    In addition to filing an objection or hearing request with the Hearing Clerk as described in 40 CFR part 178, please submit a copy of the filing (excluding any Confidential Business Information (CBI)) for inclusion in the public docket. Information not marked confidential pursuant to 40 CFR part 2 may be disclosed publicly by EPA without prior notice. Submit the non-CBI copy of your objection or hearing request, identified by docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0142, by one of the following methods:

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

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

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

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

    II. Summary of Petitioned-For Tolerance

    In the Federal Register of April 25, 2016 (81 FR 24044) (FRL-9944-86), EPA issued a document pursuant to FFDCA section 408(d)(3), 21 U.S.C. 346a(d)(3), announcing the filing of a pesticide petition (PP 6E8448) by E.I. Dupont de Nemours and Company, 974 Centre Road, Wilmington, DE 19805. The petition requested that 40 CFR part 180 be amended by establishing tolerances for residues of the insecticide triflumezopyrim (2,4-dioxo-1-(5-pyrimidinylmethyl)-3-[3-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]-2H-pyrido[1,2-a]pyrimidinium inner salt), in or on rice, grain at 0.20 parts per million (ppm). That document referenced a summary of the petition prepared by E.I. Dupont de Nemours and Company, the registrant, which is available in the docket, http://www.regulations.gov. There were no comments received in response to the notice of filing.

    Based upon review of the data supporting the petition, EPA has revised the tolerance for rice, grain to 0.40 ppm based on the OECD tolerance calculation procedure. Additionally, EPA is requiring a tolerance for rice, hull at 1.0 ppm. The reason for these changes are explained in Unit IV.D.

    III. Aggregate Risk Assessment and Determination of Safety

    Section 408(b)(2)(A)(i) of FFDCA allows EPA to establish a tolerance (the legal limit for a pesticide chemical residue in or on a food) only if EPA determines that the tolerance is “safe.” Section 408(b)(2)(A)(ii) of FFDCA defines “safe” to mean that “there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue, including all anticipated dietary exposures and all other exposures for which there is reliable information.” This includes exposure through drinking water and in residential settings, but does not include occupational exposure. Section 408(b)(2)(C) of FFDCA requires EPA to give special consideration to exposure of infants and children to the pesticide chemical residue in establishing a tolerance and to “ensure that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to the pesticide chemical residue . . . .”

    Consistent with FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D), and the factors specified in FFDCA section 408(b)(2)(D), EPA has reviewed the available scientific data and other relevant information in support of this action. EPA has sufficient data to assess the hazards of and to make a determination on aggregate exposure for triflumezopyrim including exposure resulting from the tolerances established by this action. EPA's assessment of exposures and risks associated with triflumezopyrim follows.

    A. Toxicological Profile

    EPA has evaluated the available toxicity data and considered its validity, completeness, and reliability as well as the relationship of the results of the studies to human risk. EPA has also considered available information concerning the variability of the sensitivities of major identifiable subgroups of consumers, including infants and children. The most common adverse effect observed across the triflumezopyrim toxicological database was a decrease in absolute bodyweight in dogs and rats in both sexes following subchronic and chronic exposures. No additional non-cancer effects relevant for human health risk assessment were noted in the subchronic rat and dog oral toxicity studies. No effects were seen in the mice and rabbit studies, including the dermal toxicity study.

    Chronic exposures in rats resulted in an increased incidence of bile duct hyperplasia in the presence of decreases in absolute bodyweight (~70 milligrams/kilogram/day (mg/kg/day)). Additional lesions were seen in the liver, testes, and uterus at a higher dose (~400 mg/kg/day). The rat combined chronic/carcinogenicity study showed an increase in uterine and liver tumors at a dose of ~400 mg/kg/day, which is considered excessive for evaluating carcinogenic potential. The remaining doses were not considered excessive and did not show treatment-related tumors in either sex. Liver tumors in male mice during the mouse carcinogenicity study were considered treatment-related. The proposed mode of action (constitutive androstane receptor (CAR)-mediated proliferation) for the liver tumors in male mice was adequately supported by mechanistic data that clearly identified the sequence of events, dose-response concordance and temporal relationship for this tumor type. Triflumezopyrim is classified as “not likely to be carcinogenic to humans at dose levels that do not cause a significant induction in CYP2B activity.” Based on the mechanistic studies provided, significant induction in CYP2B only occurred at 7,000 ppm (727 mg/kg/day in male mice); the chronic reference dose used for the Agency's safety assessment is based on a no observed adverse effect level of 17 mg/kg/day. As a result, the Agency concludes that the chronic reference dose will be protective of potential carcinogenicity, which can be assessed through a non-linear approach. There is no mutagenicity concern based on the results from the in vitro and in vivo genetic toxicity studies.

    Evidence of increased quantitative susceptibility in the rat developmental toxicity study was observed in the form of incomplete ossification of the parietal skull in the fetuses of dams treated with a relatively high dose (200 mg/kg/day) in the absence of any maternal toxicity. There was no evidence of susceptibility in the rat reproduction toxicity or rabbit developmental toxicity study.

    Possible signs of neurotoxicity were observed in the acute neurotoxicity (ACN) in rats as well as in the 28-day subchronic oral toxicity study in dogs. An overall decrease in motor activity was observed in the ACN study on the day of dosing. Animals also showed slight decreases in body temperature and number of rearing movements, as well as increases in the incidence of high posture, at a dose 4x higher than what elicited the decrease in motor activity. The 28-day subchronic oral toxicity study in dogs showed neurobehavioral signs such as slight impairment of forelimb and/or hindlimb strength and effects on pupil constriction. However, the neurobehavioral signs were not seen in studies of longer duration in dogs.

    Although evidence of neurotoxicity was seen in the ACN study in rats and 28-day oral toxicity study in dogs, concern is low since: (1) Effects are well-characterized with clearly established NOAEL/LOAEL values; (2) no additional neurotoxic effects were seen in the toxicological database including the subchronic neurotoxicity study (SCN); (3) there were no corroborating neuropathological findings; (4) the neurobehavioral signs in the dog were not observed in studies of longer durations in dogs; and (5) the selected endpoints for risk assessment are protective of these effects.

    Specific information on the studies received and the nature of the adverse effects caused by Triflumezopyrim as well as the no-observed-adverse-effect-level (NOAEL) and the lowest-observed-adverse-effect-level (LOAEL) from the toxicity studies can be found at http://www.regulations.gov in document Triflumezopyrim: Human Health Risk Assessment to Establish Tolerances for Rice Without U.S. Registration at page 21 in docket ID number EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0142.

    B. Toxicological Points of Departure/Levels of Concern

    Once a pesticide's toxicological profile is determined, EPA identifies toxicological points of departure (POD) and levels of concern to use in evaluating the risk posed by human exposure to the pesticide. For hazards that have a threshold below which there is no appreciable risk, the toxicological POD is used as the basis for derivation of reference values for risk assessment. PODs are developed based on a careful analysis of the doses in each toxicological study to determine the dose at which no adverse effects are observed (the NOAEL) and the lowest dose at which adverse effects of concern are identified (the LOAEL). Uncertainty/safety factors are used in conjunction with the POD to calculate a safe exposure level—generally referred to as a population-adjusted dose (PAD) or a reference dose (RfD)—and a safe margin of exposure (MOE). For non-threshold risks, the Agency assumes that any amount of exposure will lead to some degree of risk. Thus, the Agency estimates risk in terms of the probability of an occurrence of the adverse effect expected in a lifetime. For more information on the general principles EPA uses in risk characterization and a complete description of the risk assessment process, see https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-science-and-assessing-pesticide-risks/guidance-human-health-risk-assessments-pesticides.

    A summary of the toxicological endpoints for Triflumezopyrim used for human risk assessment is shown in the Table below.

    Summary Table of Toxicological Doses and Endpoints for Triflumezopyrim for Use in Human Health Risk Assessment Exposure/scenario Point of departure and uncertainty/safety factors RfD, PAD, LOC for risk assessment Study and toxicological effects Acute dietary (All populations) NOAEL = 100 mg/kg/day
  • UFA = 10x
  • UFH = 10x
  • FQPA SF = 1x
  • aPAD = 1.0 mg/kg/day Acute neurotoxicity study (rats). LOAEL = 500 mg/kg/day based on decreased motor activity on day of dosing.
    Chronic dietary (All populations) NOAEL = 17 mg/kg/day
  • UFA = 10x
  • UFH = 10x
  • FQPA SF = 1x
  • cPAD = 0.17 mg/kg/day Combined chronic/carcinogenicity study (rats). LOAEL = 71/74 (M/F) mg/kg/day based on decreased absolute bodyweights in females and increased incidence of bile duct hyperplasia in males.
    Cancer (Oral, dermal, inhalation) Not likely to be carcinogenic to humans at dose levels that do not cause a significant induction in CYP2B activity. Quantification of risk using a non-linear approach (i.e., RfD) will adequately account for all chronic toxicity, including carcinogenicity. FQPA SF = Food Quality Protection Act Safety Factor. LOAEL = lowest-observed-adverse-effect-level. LOC = level of concern. mg/kg/day = milligram/kilogram/day. MOE = margin of exposure. NOAEL = no-observed-adverse-effect-level. PAD = population adjusted dose (a = acute, c = chronic). RfD = reference dose. UF = uncertainty factor. UFA = extrapolation from animal to human (interspecies). UFDB = to account for the absence of data or other data deficiency. UFH = potential variation in sensitivity among members of the human population (intraspecies). UFL = use of a LOAEL to extrapolate a NOAEL. UFS = use of a short-term study for long-term risk assessment.
    C. Exposure Assessment

    1. Dietary exposure from food and feed uses. In evaluating dietary exposure to triflumezopyrim, EPA considered exposure under the petitioned-for tolerances. EPA assessed dietary exposures from triflumezopyrim in food as follows:

    i. Acute exposure. Quantitative acute dietary exposure and risk assessments are performed for a food-use pesticide if a toxicological study has indicated the possibility of an effect of concern occurring as a result of a 1-day or single exposure.

    Such effects were identified for triflumezopyrim. In estimating acute dietary exposure, EPA used food consumption information from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) 2003-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, What We Eat In America (NHANES/WWEIA). As to residue levels in food, EPA used an unrefined dietary analysis and incorporated tolerance-level residues and assumed 100% of all rice was treated.

    ii. Chronic exposure. In conducting the chronic dietary exposure assessment EPA used the food consumption data from the USDA 2003-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, What We Eat In America (NHANES/WWEIA). As to residue levels in food, EPA used an unrefined dietary analysis and incorporated tolerance-level residues and assumed 100% of all rice was treated.

    iii. Cancer. Based on the data summarized in Unit III.A., EPA has concluded that triflumezopyrim is not likely to cause cancer to humans at dose levels that do not cause a significant increase in CYP2B activity. Additionally, there is no chronic risk from exposure to triflumezopyrim and the chronic reference dose is protective of potential carcinogenicity. Therefore, a dietary exposure assessment for the purpose of assessing cancer risk is unnecessary.

    iv. Anticipated residue and percent crop treated (PCT) information. EPA did not use anticipated residue and/or PCT information in the dietary assessment for triflumezopyrim. Tolerance-level residues and/or 100% CT were assumed for all food commodities.

    2. Dietary exposure from drinking water. Because there are no domestic registrations for triflumezopyrim in the United States, dietary exposure (acute and chronic) from imported commodities is the only source of exposure assessed. Residues from imported commodities are not expected to reach drinking water sources.

    3. From non-dietary exposure. The term “residential exposure” is used in this document to refer to non-occupational, non-dietary exposure (e.g., for lawn and garden pest control, indoor pest control, termiticides, and flea and tick control on pets). Triflumezopyrim is not registered for any specific use patterns that would result in residential exposure.

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

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

    D. Safety Factor for Infants and Children

    1. In general. Section 408(b)(2)(C) of FFDCA provides that EPA shall apply an additional tenfold (10X) margin of safety for infants and children in the case of threshold effects to account for prenatal and postnatal toxicity and the completeness of the database on toxicity and exposure unless EPA determines based on reliable data that a different margin of safety will be safe for infants and children. This additional margin of safety is commonly referred to as the FQPA Safety Factor (SF). In applying this provision, EPA either retains the default value of 10X, or uses a different additional safety factor when reliable data available to EPA support the choice of a different factor.

    2. Prenatal and postnatal sensitivity. There was no evidence of increased susceptibility in the rabbit developmental or the rat reproduction toxicity studies; however, there was evidence of increased quantitative susceptibility in the rat developmental study in rats where an increased incidence of incomplete ossification of the parietal skull was seen in the absence of maternal toxicity. Concern is low since: (1) The effect is well-characterized with clearly established NOAEL/LOAEL values; and (2) the selected endpoints for this chemical are protective of these effects.

    3. Conclusion. EPA has determined that reliable data show the safety of infants and children would be adequately protected if the FQPA SF were reduced to 1X for assessing risks for all populations. That decision is based on the following findings:

    i. The toxicity database for triflumezopyrim is complete.

    ii. Although there is evidence of neurotoxicity in the ACN study in rats and 28-day oral toxicity study in dogs for triflumezopyrim, the concern is low since: (1) The effects are well-characterized with clearly established NOAEL/LOAEL values; (2) no additional neurotoxic effects were seen in the toxicological database including the SCN; (3) there were no corroborating neuropathological findings; (4) the neurobehavioral signs in the dog were not observed in studies of longer durations in dogs; and (5) the selected endpoints for this chemical are protective of these effects. As a result, there is no need to require a developmental neurotoxicity study or retain the 10X to account for potential neurotoxic effects.

    iii. Although there was evidence of increased quantitative susceptibility in the rat developmental toxicity study where incomplete ossification of the parietal skull in the fetuses of dams treated with a relatively high dose (200 mg/kg/day) was observed in the absence of any maternal toxicity, concern is low since: (1) The effect is well-characterized with clearly established NOAEL/LOAEL values and (2) the selected endpoints for this chemical are protective of these effects. There was no evidence of increased susceptibility in the rabbit developmental or the rat reproduction toxicity studies.

    iv. There are no residual uncertainties identified in the exposure databases. The dietary food exposure assessments were performed based on considering that 100% of all rice was treated and using tolerance-level residues. Since the metabolites were found at insignificant levels in the metabolism studies, triflumezopyrim is considered the only residue of concern. These assessments will not underestimate the exposure and risks posed by triflumezopyrim.

    E. Aggregate Risks and Determination of Safety

    EPA determines whether acute and chronic dietary pesticide exposures are safe by comparing aggregate exposure estimates to the acute PAD (aPAD) and chronic PAD (cPAD). For linear cancer risks, EPA calculates the lifetime probability of acquiring cancer given the estimated aggregate exposure. Short-, intermediate-, and chronic-term risks are evaluated by comparing the estimated aggregate food, water, and residential exposure to the appropriate PODs to ensure that an adequate MOE exists.

    1. Acute risk. Using the exposure assumptions discussed in this unit for acute exposure, the acute dietary exposure from food and water to triflumezopyrim will occupy <1% of the aPAD for all infants <1 year old, the population group receiving the greatest exposure.

    2. Chronic risk. Using the exposure assumptions described in this unit for chronic exposure, EPA has concluded that chronic exposure to triflumezopyrim from food will utilize <1% of the cPAD for all infants <1 year old, the population group receiving the greatest exposure. There are no residential uses for triflumezopyrim.

    3. Short-term and Intermediate-term risk. Triflumezopyrim is not registered for any use patterns that would result in short-term or intermediate-term residential exposure. Because there are no residential uses for triflumezopyrim, as a result, aggregate risk estimates for short- and intermediate-term exposure are equivalent to the chronic dietary risk estimates and are not of concern.

    4. Aggregate cancer risk for U.S. population. As discussed in Unit III.A., EPA has determined that triflumezopyrim is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans at doses that do not cause a significant induction in CYP2B activity. Because there is no chronic risk from exposure to triflumezopyrim and the chronic reference dose is protective of potential carcinogenicity, triflumezopyrim is not expected to pose a cancer risk.

    5. Determination of safety. Based on these risk assessments, EPA concludes that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to the general population, or to infants and children from aggregate exposure to triflumezopyrim residues.

    IV. Other Considerations A. Analytical Enforcement Methodology

    Adequate enforcement methodology (DuPont Liquid chromatography Mass spectrometry/mass spectrometry (LC/MS/MS) methods 36348 and 45170) is available to enforce the tolerance expression. The method may be requested from: Chief, Analytical Chemistry Branch, Environmental Science Center, 701 Mapes Rd., Ft. Meade, MD 20755-5350; telephone number: (410) 305-2905; email address: [email protected]

    B. International Residue Limits

    In making its tolerance decisions, EPA seeks to harmonize U.S. tolerances with international standards whenever possible, consistent with U.S. food safety standards and agricultural practices. EPA considers the international maximum residue limits (MRLs) established by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (Codex), as required by FFDCA section 408(b)(4). The Codex Alimentarius is a joint United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization food standards program, and it is recognized as an international food safety standards-setting organization in trade agreements to which the United States is a party. EPA may establish a tolerance that is different from a Codex MRL; however, FFDCA section 408(b)(4) requires that EPA explain the reasons for departing from the Codex level.

    The Codex has not established a MRL for triflumezopyrim.

    C. Revisions to Petitioned-For Tolerances

    EPA is establishing a tolerance for rice, grain at 0.40 ppm, rather than at 0.20 ppm as requested, in addition to establishing a tolerance for rice, hulls of 1.0 ppm. The rice grain tolerance is based on the OECD tolerance calculation procedure with the inputted residues adjusted proportionally to reflect the maximum application rate. The raw agricultural commodity of “rice, grain” consists of the rice kernel, as well as the rice hull. The rice hull is considered a processed commodity for rice, and where residues concentrate in processed commodities, a higher tolerance to cover those residues is warranted. Because the available data indicates a higher level of residues on the rice hull, EPA is establishing a separate tolerance to cover those residues.

    V. Conclusion

    Therefore, tolerances are established for residues of triflumezopyrim, (2,4-dioco-1-(5-pyrimidinylmethyl)-3-[3-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]-2H-pyrido[1,2-a]pyrimidinium inner salt), in or on rice, grain at 0.40 and rice, hulls at 1.0 ppm.

    VI. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

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

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

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

    VII. Congressional Review Act

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

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 180

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

    Dated: September 7, 2017. Richard P. Keigwin, Jr., Director, Office of Pesticide Programs.

    Therefore, 40 CFR chapter I is amended as follows:

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

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

    2. Add § 180.107 to subpart C to read as follows:
    §  180.107 Triflumezopyrim; tolerance for residues.

    (a) General. Tolerances are established for residues of the insecticide triflumezopyrim, including its metabolites and degradates, in or on the following food commodities in the table below. Compliance with the tolerance levels specified below is to be determined by measuring only triflumezopyrim (2,4-dioxo-1-(5-pyrimidinylmethyl)-3-[3-(trifluoromethyl)phenyl]-2H-pyrido[1,2-a] pyrimidinium inner salt) in or on the commodity.

    Commodity Parts per
  • million
  • Rice, grain * 0.40 Rice, hulls * 1.0 * There are no U.S. registrations for the use of triflumezopyrim on these commodities.

    (b) Section 18 emergency exemptions. [Reserved]

    (c) Tolerances with regional registrations. [Reserved]

    (d) Indirect or inadvertent residues. [Reserved]

    [FR Doc. 2017-22356 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION 47 CFR Part 90 [PS Docket No. 16-269, FCC 17-75] Procedures for Commission Review of State Opt-Out Request From the FirstNet Radio Access Network AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Final rule; announcement of effective date.

    SUMMARY:

    In this document, the Commission announces that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved, for a period of six months, the information collection associated with the Commission's Procedures for Commission Review of State Opt-Out Request from the FirstNet Radio Access Network, Report and Order (Report and Order)'s rules and procedures for administering the state opt-out process as provided under the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, as well delineating the specific standards by which the Commission will evaluate state opt-out applications. This document is consistent with the Report and Order, which stated that the Commission would publish a document in the Federal Register announcing the effective date of those rules.

    DATES:

    The amendments to 47 CFR 90.532(b) and (c) published at 82 FR 46690, October 6, 2017, are effective November 6, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For additional information about the information collection, contact Nicole Ongele, FCC, at (202) 418-2991 or via email [email protected] and to [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    This document announces that, on October 6, 2017, OMB approved this information collection under the emergency processing of the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 5 CFR 1320.13, for a period of six months, the information collection requirements relating to the State opt-out rules contained in the Commission's Report and Order, FCC 17-75, published at 82 FR 46690, October 6, 2017. The OMB Control Number is 3060-1245. The Commission publishes this document as an announcement of the effective date of the rules. If you have any comments on the burden estimates listed below, or how the Commission can improve the collections and reduce any burdens caused thereby, please contact Nicole Ongele, Federal Communications Commission, Room 1-A620, 445 12th Street SW., Washington, DC 20554. Please include the OMB Control Number, 3060-1245, in your correspondence. The Commission will also accept your comments via email at [email protected]

    To request materials in accessible formats for people with disabilities (Braille, large print, electronic files, audio format), send an email to [email protected] or call the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau at (202) 418-0530 (voice), (202) 418-0432 (TTY).

    Synopsis

    As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3507), the FCC is notifying the public that it received final OMB approval on October 6, 2017, for the information collection requirements contained in the modifications to the Commission's rules in 47 CFR 90.532. Under 5 CFR part 1320, an agency may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a current, valid OMB Control Number.

    No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act that does not display a current, valid OMB Control Number. The OMB Control Number is 3060-1245.

    The foregoing notice is required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Public Law 104-13, October 1, 1995, and 44 U.S.C. 3507.

    The total annual reporting burdens and costs for the respondents are as follows:

    OMB Control Number: 3060-1245.

    OMB Approval Date: October 6, 2017.

    OMB Expiration Date: April 30, 2018.

    Title: Procedures for Commission Review of State Opt-Out Request from the FirstNet Radio Access Network.

    Form Number: N/A.

    Respondents: State, local or tribal governments.

    Number of Respondents and Responses: 55 respondents; 110 responses.

    Estimated Time per Response: 0.25 hours per initial notification.

    Frequency of Response: One-time reporting requirement.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. Statutory authority for requiring licensees to submit this information enter into the written agreements is contained in the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012, Public Law 112 96, 126 Stat. 156 §§ 6001-6303, 6413 (codified at 47 U.S.C. 1401-1443, 1457).

    Total Annual Burden: 26,414 hours.

    Total Annual Cost: No cost.

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: Alternative state plans are very likely to contain proprietary information as well as information whose disclosure could compromise network security. Parties may therefore seek confidential treatment of any filing under our Part 0 rules, including the use of a protective order process to allow other those granted party status to the restricted proceeding access to the information on a confidential basis.

    Privacy Act: No impact(s).

    Needs and Uses: The purpose of requiring this collection is to comply with Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. The Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012 provides that “the Governor shall choose whether to participate in the deployment of the nationwide, interoperable broadband network as proposed by [FirstNet,] or conduct its own deployment of a radio access network in such State.” If a Governor chooses not to participate in the NPSBN, section 6302(e)(3)(A) of the Act requires the Governor to “notify [FirstNet], the NTIA, and the Commission of such decision.” The Act also states that an opt-out state “shall submit” to the Commission an “alternative plan” for “the construction, maintenance, operation, and improvements” of the RAN within the state. Section 3(C)(ii) of the Act mandates that “upon submission of this plan, the Commission shall approve or disapprove of the plan.”

    We require that either the Governor or the Governor's his duly authorized designee may provide notification of the Governor's decision. The opt-out notification to the Commission must also include a certification that the state is providing simultaneous notice of its opt-out decision to both to NTIA and FirstNet. To facilitate the electronic filing of opt-out notifications, we will establish the email address [email protected] as the address for this purpose.

    Each opt-out state will have 60 days from the completion of its Request For Proposal (240 days from the date of its opt-out notification to the Commission) to file an alternative state plan via the secure email address [email protected] or via certified mail to the Secretary's office.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary, Office of the Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22339 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration 49 CFR Part 174 [Docket No. PHMSA-2017-0102] Hazardous Materials: Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains AGENCY:

    Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notification of availability; request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    This document provides notice that PHMSA and the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) are publishing a revised Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) updating the original RIA associated with the electronically controlled pneumatic (ECP) brake provision of PHMSA's May 8, 2015, Final Rule titled “Enhanced Tank Car Standards and Operational Controls for High-Hazard Flammable Trains” (Final Rule). The agencies are publishing the updated RIA in response to the mandate of the Fixing America's Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. The updated RIA incorporates new testing and analysis the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) reviewed, recommendations from two U.S. General Accountability Office (GAO) audits, and updates to the costs and benefits of the provision of the Final Rule based on current economic conditions. PHMSA invites comments on all aspects of the updated RIA and the agency will respond to all relevant comments received.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received by November 1, 2017. Comments received after that date will be considered to the extent practicable, provided the comments do not result in additional delay or expense.

    ADDRESSES:

    You may submit comments identified by the docket number PHMSA-2017-0102 by any of the following methods:

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

    Fax: 1-202-493-2251.

    Mail or Hand Delivery: U.S. DOT Docket Management System, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC 20590-0001 between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

    Instructions: If you submit your comments by mail, submit two copies. To receive confirmation that PHMSA received your comments, include a self-addressed stamped postcard.

    Privacy Act Statement

    Under 5 U.S.C. 553(c), the Department of Transportation (DOT) solicits comments from the public to better inform its regulatory process. DOT posts these comments, without edit, including any personal information the commenter provides, to www.regulations.gov, as described in the system of records notice (DOT/ALL- 14 FDMS), which can be reviewed at www.dot.gov/privacy.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mark Johnson, Senior Economist, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, by telephone at 202-366-4495 or by email at [email protected]; or, Mark Anderson, Industry Economist, Federal Railroad Administration, by telephone at 202-493-6078 or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On May 8, 2015, PHMSA, in coordination with FRA, published a Final Rule adopting requirements designed to reduce the consequences and, in some instances, reduce the probability of accidents involving trains transporting large quantities of flammable liquids. See 80 FR 26643. The Final Rule defined certain trains transporting large volumes of flammable liquids as high-hazard flammable trains (HHFT) 1 and others as high-hazard flammable unit trains (HHFUT).2 The Final Rule required HHFUTs transporting at least one flammable liquid classified as a packing group I material be operated with an ECP braking system by January 1, 2021, and all other HHFUTs be operated with an ECP braking system by May 1, 2023. See 49 CFR 174.310(a)(3).

    1 The Final Rule defined an HHFT as “a single train transporting 20 or more loaded tank cars of a Class 3 flammable liquid in a continuous block or a single train carrying 35 or more loaded tank cars of a Class 3 flammable liquid throughout the train consist.” See 49 CFR 171.8.

    2 The Final Rule defined an HHFUT as “a single train transporting 70 or more loaded tank cars containing Class 3 flammable liquid.”

    In December 2015, Congress passed the FAST Act. Pub. L. 114-94, 129 Stat. 1686 (Dec. 4, 2015) (codified at 49 U.S.C. 20168). Section 7311 of the FAST Act (section 7311) established a process, including independent study and testing, for DOT to use in developing an updated RIA related to the Final Rule's ECP brake provision. The Secretary is also required to solicit public comment on the revised RIA, and issue a final updated RIA. Finally, Section 7311 requires the Secretary of Transportation to review the final updated RIA and determine if the final rule's ECP brake requirements are justified, based on whether the final updated RIA demonstrates that the benefits exceed the costs. The FAST Act requires this entire process to be completed no later than December 4, 2017.

    Section 7311 required DOT to enter into an agreement with NAS to test ECP brakes and reevaluate the economic analysis supporting the ECP brake requirement of the Final Rule.3 Section 7311 required the testing to “objectively, accurately, and reliably measure[s] the performance of ECP brake systems relative to other braking technologies or systems, such as distributed power and 2-way end-of-train devices.” The FAST Act also provided for GAO review of the potential costs and benefits of ECP brakes. In response, GAO completed an evaluation of the business benefits, safety benefits, and costs that DOT estimated in the RIA for the final rule.4 Additionally, GAO recently completed a second evaluation comparing the forecasted values of certain data points that were used to support DOT's ECP brake analysis.5 Both audits are discussed in the updated RIA.

    3 In a March 17, 2016, letter, NAS declined to perform the testing, citing preliminary cost estimates to perform the testing in excess of $100 million and expressing concern about meeting the statutory deadline. As an alternative, to meet the intent of the FAST Act, DOT conducted the testing itself and contracted with NAS to review and monitor the test plan.

    4 DOT's Rulemaking on Electronically Controlled Pneumatic Brakes Could Benefit from Additional Data and Transparency, GAO-17-122, Oct 12, 2016.

    5 2015 Electronically Controlled Pneumatic Brake Rule: Comparison of DOT Forecasts for Selected Data Points for 2015 and 2016 to Preliminary Data for Those Years, GAO-17-567R, May 31, 2017

    PHMSA is providing the public with an opportunity to comment on the updated RIA. To enable PHMSA to meet section 7311's deadline, all comments must be received in the docket referenced in the ADDRESSES section of this document by November 1, 2017. Comments received after that date will be considered to the extent practicable, provided the comments do not result in additional delay or expense. All documents and comments related to this matter, including the updated RIA, are available for review at http://www.regulations.gov in docket number PHMSA-2017-0102.

    Issued in Washington, DC on October 10, 2017, under authority delegated in 49 CFR part 1.97. Drue Pearce, Acting Administrator, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22281 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-60-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 151211999-6343-02] RIN 0648-XF747 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Northeast Multispecies Fishery; Trimester 2 Georges Bank Cod Total Allowable Catch Area Closure; Updated 2017 Georges Bank Cod Annual Catch Limit for the Common Pool; Possession Prohibition for the Common Pool Fishery AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; area closure and inseason adjustment.

    SUMMARY:

    We are closing the Georges Bank Cod Trimester Total Allowable Catch Area for the remainder of Trimester 2, through December 31, 2017. This action also prohibits possession of Georges Bank cod by common pool vessels for the remainder of the fishing year, through April 30, 2018. In addition, we are reducing the 2017 fishing year Georges Bank cod sub-annual catch limit for the common pool due to an overage in fishing year 2016.

    DATES:

    Effective October 11, 2017, through April 30, 2018.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Spencer Talmage, Fishery Management Specialist, (978) 281-9232, [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    We recently approved Framework Adjustment 56, which set 2017 annual catch limits (ACLs) for groundfish stocks (82 FR 16133). The possibility of minor adjustments and corrections was noted in the Framework 56 proposed and final rules because final allocations are not always available at the time of the rulemaking for the upcoming fishing year.

    Based on final 2016 catch information that recently became available, the fishing year 2016 common pool sub-ACL for Georges Bank (GB) cod was exceeded by 2.8 metric tons (mt). If the common pool sub-ACL for any stock is exceeded, we are required to reduce the common pool sub-ACL by the amount of the overage in the next fishing year. Therefore, this action reduces the fishing year 2017 GB cod common pool sub-ACL by 2.8 mt, which results in a revised 2017 GB cod common pool sub-ACL of 7.0 mt. The revised Trimester Total Allowable Catches (TACs) are provided in Table 1.

    Table 1—Current and Revised Georges Bank Cod Trimester TACs Trimester 1 Trimester 2 Trimester 3 Allocation Percentage 25% 37% 38%. Current Trimester TAC 2.4 mt 3.6 mt 3.7 mt. Revised Trimester TAC 1.7 mt 2.6 mt 2.7 mt.

    As of October 3, 2017, the common pool fishery is projected to have caught 123 percent of the adjusted Trimester 2 TAC (2.6 mt) for GB cod. Additionally, the common pool fishery has caught 83 percent of its adjusted 2017 sub-ACL, and has only 1.2 mt left for the remainder of the fishing year. Federal regulations at 50 CFR 648.82(n)(2)(ii) require the Regional Administrator to close a common pool Trimester TAC Area for a stock when 90 percent of the Trimester TAC is projected to be caught. The closure applies to all common pool vessels fishing with gear capable of catching that stock for the remainder of the trimester.

    As a result, effective October 11, 2017, the GB Cod Trimester TAC Area is closed for the remainder of Trimester 2, through December 31, 2017, to all common pool vessels fishing on a Northeast multispecies trip with trawl gear, sink gillnet gear, and longline/hook gear, including handgear vessels. The GB Cod Trimester TAC Area consists of statistical areas 521, 522, 525, and 561. The area reopens at the beginning of Trimester 3, on January 1, 2018.

    Data indicate that common pool vessels have caught a significant portion of the total catch from outside the statistical areas that will be affected by the closure described above. The Regional Administrator is authorized under 50 CFR 648.86(o)(1) to adjust possession and trip limits for common pool vessels to prevent exceeding the pertinent common pool quotas during the fishing year. Given this, and because the common pool has caught more than 80 percent of its annual quota, the possession of GB cod by all common pool vessels is prohibited effective October 11, 2017, through April 30, 2018. This action is intended to prevent the common pool from further exceeding its Trimester 2 TAC or from exceeding its annual quota.

    If a vessel declared its trip through the Vessel Monitoring System (VMS) or the interactive voice response system, and crossed the VMS demarcation line prior to October 11, 2017, it may complete its trip within the Trimester TAC Area. A vessel that has set gillnet gear prior to October 11, 2017, may complete its trip by hauling such gear.

    Any overage of the Trimester 1 or 2 TACs must be deducted from the Trimester 3 TAC. If the common pool fishery exceeds its total quota for a stock in the 2017 fishing year, the overage must be deducted from the common pool's quota for that stock for fishing year 2018. Any uncaught portion of the Trimester 1 and Trimester 2 TACs is carried over into the next trimester. However, any uncaught portion of the common pool's total annual quota may not be carried over into the following fishing year.

    Weekly quota monitoring reports for the common pool fishery are on our Web site at: http://www.greateratlantic.fisheries.noaa.gov/ro/fso/MultiMonReports.htm. We will continue to monitor common pool catch through vessel trip reports, dealer-reported landings, VMS catch reports, and other available information and, if necessary, we will make additional adjustments to common pool management measures.

    Classification

    The NMFS Assistant Administrator has determined that this temporary rule is consistent with the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan, other provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, and other applicable law.

    This action is exempt from the procedures of Executive Order 12866 because this action contains no implementing regulations.

    The Assistant Administrator for Fisheries, NOAA, finds good cause pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) and 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to waive prior notice and the opportunity for public comment and the 30-day delayed effectiveness period because it would be impracticable and contrary to the public interest.

    There are several reasons that notice and comment are impracticable, unnecessary, and contrary to the public interest. First, the proposed and final rules for Framework 56 explained the possibility of minor adjustments and corrections because final allocations are not always available at the time of the rulemaking for the upcoming fishing year. These adjustments are routine and formulaic, required by regulation, and anticipated by industry. No comments were received on the potential for these adjustments, which provide an accurate accounting of the common pool's allocation.

    The regulations require the Regional Administrator to close a trimester TAC area to the common pool fishery when 90 percent of the Trimester TAC for a stock has been caught. Updated catch information only recently became available indicating that the common pool fishery is projected to have caught 123 percent of its Trimester 2 TAC for GB cod as of October 3, 2017. The time necessary to provide for prior notice and comment, and a 30-day delay in effectiveness, would prevent the immediate closure of the GB Cod Trimester TAC Area and prohibition of GB cod possession. Not closing the area immediately and prohibiting GB cod possession increases the likelihood that the common pool fishery will further exceed its trimester TAC, or exceed its annual quota, to the detriment of this stock, which could undermine management objectives of the Northeast Multispecies Fishery Management Plan. Additional overages would negatively affect the common pool fishery as a result of future overage paybacks or premature closures of the fishery.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22347 Filed 10-11-17; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 50 CFR Part 648 [Docket No. 161017970-6999-02] RIN 0648-XF721 Fisheries of the Northeastern United States; Summer Flounder Fishery; Quota Transfer AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Temporary rule; quota transfer.

    SUMMARY:

    NMFS announces that the State of North Carolina is transferring a portion of its 2017 commercial summer flounder quota to the State of New York. This quota adjustment is necessary to comply with the Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Fishery Management Plan quota transfer provisions. This announcement informs the public of the revised commercial quotas for North Carolina and New York.

    DATES:

    Effective October 13, 2017, through December 31, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Cynthia Hanson, Fishery Management Specialist, (978) 281-9180.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Regulations governing the summer flounder fishery are found in 50 CFR 648.100 through 648.110. These regulations require annual specification of a commercial quota that is apportioned among the coastal states from Maine through North Carolina. The process to set the annual commercial quota and the percent allocated to each state is described in § 648.102, and the initial 2017 allocations were published on December 22, 2016 (81 FR 93842).

    The final rule implementing Amendment 5 to the Summer Flounder Fishery Management Plan, as published in the Federal Register on December 17, 1993 (58 FR 65936), provided a mechanism for transferring summer flounder commercial quota from one state to another. Two or more states, under mutual agreement and with the concurrence of the NMFS Greater Atlantic Regional Administrator, can transfer or combine summer flounder commercial quota under § 648.102(c)(2). The Regional Administrator is required to consider the criteria in § 648.102(c)(2)(i)(A) through (C) in the evaluation of requests for quota transfers or combinations.

    North Carolina is transferring 3,000 lb (1,361 kg) of summer flounder commercial quota to New York. This transfer was requested to repay landings by a North Carolina-permitted vessel that landed in New York under a safe harbor agreement.

    The revised summer flounder quotas for calendar year 2017 are now: North Carolina, 1,536,693 lb (697,032 kg); and New York, 435,764 lb (197,659 kg); based on the initial quotas published in the 2017 Summer Flounder, Scup, and Black Sea Bass Specifications and subsequent transfers.

    Classification

    This action is taken under 50 CFR part 648 and is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. Emily H. Menashes, Acting Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22272 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    82 198 Monday, October 16, 2017 Proposed Rules DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0949; Airspace Docket No. 17-ACE-11] Proposed Amendment of Class E Airspace; Charles City, IA AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to modify Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Northeast Iowa Regional Airport, Charles City, IA. The FAA is proposing this action due to the cancellation of the instrument approach procedures associated with the decommissioned Charles City non-directional radio beacon (NDB). Additionally, the name of the airport would be updated to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database. This action would enhance the safety and management of instrument flight rules (IFR) operations at this airport.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before November 30, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone (202) 366-9826, or (800) 647-5527. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2017-0949; Airspace Docket No. 17-ACE-11 at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays.

    FAA Order 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/ibr-locations.html.

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

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

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

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Authority for This Rulemaking

    The FAA's authority to issue rules regarding aviation safety is found in Title 49 of the United States Code. Subtitle I, Section 106 describes the authority of the FAA Administrator. Subtitle VII, Aviation Programs, describes in more detail the scope of the agency's authority. This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in Subtitle VII, Part A, Subpart I, Section 40103. Under that section, the FAA is charged with prescribing regulations to assign the use of airspace necessary to ensure the safety of aircraft and the efficient use of airspace. This regulation is within the scope of that authority as it would amend Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface at Northeast Iowa Regional Airport, Charles City, IA, to support IFR operations at this airport.

    Comments Invited

    Interested parties are invited to participate in this proposed rulemaking by submitting such written data, views, or arguments, as they may desire. Comments that provide the factual basis supporting the views and suggestions presented are particularly helpful in developing reasoned regulatory decisions on the proposal. Comments are specifically invited on the overall regulatory, aeronautical, economic, environmental, and energy-related aspects of the proposal. Communications should identify both docket numbers and be submitted in triplicate to the address listed above. Commenters wishing the FAA to acknowledge receipt of their comments on this notice must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to Docket No. FAA-2017-0949/Airspace Docket No. 17-ACE-11.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    All communications received before the specified closing date for comments will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this notice may be changed in light of the comments received. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket.

    Availability of NPRMs

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

    You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office (see the ADDRESSES section for the address and phone number) between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal business hours at the 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 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this document. FAA Order 7400.11B 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 the Class E airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface to within a 6.4-mile radius (reduced from a 7-mile radius) of Northeast Iowa Regional Airport (previously Charles City Municipal Airport), Charles City, IA, and updating the name of the airport to coincide with the FAA's aeronautical database.

    Airspace reconfiguration is necessary due to cancellation of the instrument approach procedures associated with the decommissioned Charles City NDB, and to bring the airspace in compliance with FAA Order 7400.2L, Procedures for Handling Airspace Matters. Controlled airspace is necessary for the safety and management of standard instrument approach procedures for IFR operations at this airport.

    Class E airspace designations are published in paragraph 6005 of FAA Order 7400.11B, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, 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, 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 proposed 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 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6005 Class E Airspace Areas Extending Upward From 700 Feet or More Above the Surface of the Earth. ACE IA E5 Charles City, IA [Amended] Northeast Iowa Regional Airport, IA (lat. 43°04′21″ N., long. 92°36′39″ W.)

    That airspace extending upward from 700 feet above the surface within a 6.4-mile radius of Northeast Iowa Regional Airport.

    Issued in Fort Worth, Texas, on October 5, 2017. Walter Tweedy, Acting Manager, Operations Support Group, ATO Central Service Center.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22233 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION Federal Aviation Administration 14 CFR Part 71 [Docket No. FAA-2017-0932; Airspace Docket No. 17-AEA-9] Proposed Amendment of VOR Federal Airways V-20, V-31, V-33, V-308, and V-433; and Revocation of V-379; in the Vicinity of Nottingham, MD AGENCY:

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

    ACTION:

    Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

    SUMMARY:

    This action proposes to modify VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) Federal airways V-20, V-31, V-33, V-308, and V-433; and remove V-379; in the vicinity of Nottingham, MD. This action is necessary due to the planned decommissioning of the Nottingham, MD, VORTAC navigation aid, which provides navigation guidance for portions of the above routes. The Nottingham VORTAC is being decommissioned as part of the VOR Minimum Operational Network (MON) program.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before November 30, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Send comments on this proposal to the U.S. Department of Transportation, Docket Operations, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, Washington, DC 20590; telephone: 1 (800) 647-5527 or (202) 366-9826. You must identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2017-0932 and Airspace Docket No. 17-AEA-9 at the beginning of your comments. You may also submit comments through the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov. You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received, and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except federal holidays. The Docket Office (telephone 1 (800) 647-5527), is on the ground floor of the building at the above address.

    FAA Order 7400.11B, 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 7400.11B at NARA, call (202) 741-6030, or go to http://www.archives.gov/federal-register/cfr/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 would modify the VOR Federal airway route structure in the eastern United States to maintain the efficient flow of air traffic.

    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-2017-0932 and Airspace Docket No. 17-AEA-9) and be submitted in triplicate to the Docket Management Facility (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 action must submit with those comments a self-addressed, stamped postcard on which the following statement is made: “Comments to FAA Docket No. FAA-2017-0932 and Airspace Docket No. 17-AEA-9.” The postcard will be date/time stamped and returned to the commenter.

    All communications received on or before the specified comment closing date will be considered before taking action on the proposed rule. The proposal contained in this action may be changed in light of comments received. A report summarizing each substantive public contact with FAA personnel concerned with this rulemaking will be filed in the docket.

    Availability of NPRM

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

    You may review the public docket containing the proposal, any comments received and any final disposition in person in the Dockets Office (see ADDRESSES section for address and phone number) between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. An informal docket may also be examined during normal business hours at the office of the Eastern Service Center, Federal Aviation Administration, Room 210, 1701 Columbia Ave., College Park, GA 30337.

    Availability and Summary of Documents for Incorporation by Reference

    This document proposes to amend FAA Order 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017 and effective September 15, 2017. FAA Order 7400.11B is publicly available as listed in the ADDRESSES section of this proposed rule. FAA Order 7400.11B 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 to modify the descriptions of VOR Federal airways V-20, V-31, V-33, V-308, and V-433; and to remove V-379; in the Vicinity of Nottingham, MD, due to the planned decommissioning of the Nottingham, MD, VORTAC. The proposed route changes are described below.

    V-20: V-20 currently extends between McAllen, TX, and Nottingham, MD. The airway segments between Richmond, VA, and Nottingham, MD, would be removed. The amended route would, therefore, extend between McAllen, TX, and Richmond, VA.

    V-31: V-31 currently extends between Patuxent River, MD, and Buffalo, NY. This proposal would remove the airway segment between Patuxent River, MD, and Nottingham, MD. The amended route would extend between Baltimore, MD, and Buffalo, NY.

    V-33: V-33 currently extends between Harcum, VA, and Buffalo, NY. This action proposes to remove the segments between Harcum, VA, and Baltimore, MD. The amended route would extend between Baltimore, MD, and Buffalo, NY.

    V-308: V-308 currently extends between Nottingham, MD, and Norwich, CT. This action would remove the route segment between Nottingham, MD, and Waterloo, DE. The amended route would extend between Waterloo, DE, and Norwich, CT.

    V-379: V-379 currently extends between Nottingham, MD, and Smyrna, DE. V-379 would be removed in its entirety.

    V-433: V-433 currently extends between Nottingham, MD, and Syracuse, NY. The segments between Nottingham, MD, and Dupont, DE, would be removed. The amended route would extend between Dupont, DE, and Syracuse, NY.

    Domestic VOR Federal airways are published in paragraph 6010(a) of FAA Order 7400.11B, dated August 3, 2017, and effective September 15, 2017, which is incorporated by reference in 14 CFR 71.1. The VOR Federal airways listed in this document would be subsequently published 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 Department of Transportation (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.

    List of Subjects in 14 CFR Part 71

    Airspace, Incorporation by reference, Navigation (air).

    The Proposed Amendment

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

    PART 71—DESIGNATION OF CLASS A, B, C, D, AND E AIRSPACE AREAS; AIR TRAFFIC SERVICE ROUTES; AND REPORTING POINTS 1. The authority citation for 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 7400.11B, Airspace Designations and Reporting Points, dated August 3, 2017 and effective September 15, 2017, is amended as follows: Paragraph 6010(a) Domestic VOR Federal Airways. V-20 [Amended]

    From McAllen, TX, via INT McAllen 038° and Corpus Christi, TX, 178° radials; 10 miles 8 miles wide, 37 miles 7 miles wide (3 miles east and 4 miles west of centerline), Corpus Christi; INT Corpus Christi 054° and Palacios, TX, 226° radials; Palacios; Hobby, TX; Beaumont, TX; Lake Charles, LA; Lafayette, LA; Reserve, LA; INT Reserve 084° and Gulfport, MS, 247° radials; Gulfport; Semmes, AL; INT Semmes 048° and Monroeville, AL, 231° radials; Monroeville; Montgomery, AL; Tuskegee, AL; Columbus, GA; INT Columbus 068° and Athens, GA, 195° radials; Athens; Electric City, SC; Sugarloaf Mountain, NC; Barretts Mountain, NC; South Boston, VA; to Richmond, VA. The airspace on the main airway above 14,000 feet MSL from McAllen to 49 miles northeast and the airspace within Mexico is excluded.

    V-31 [Amended]

    From Baltimore, MD; INT Baltimore 004° and Harrisburg, PA, 147° radials; Harrisburg; Selinsgrove, PA; Williamsport, PA; Elmira, NY; INT Elmira 002° and Rochester, NY, 120° radials; Rochester; to INT Rochester 279° and Buffalo, NY 023° radials.

    V-33 [Amended]

    From Baltimore, MD; INT Baltimore 004° and Harrisburg, PA, 147° radials; Harrisburg; Philipsburg, PA; Keating, PA; Bradford, PA; Buffalo, NY.

    V-308 [Amended]

    From Waterloo, DE; Sea Isle; NJ; INT Sea Isle 050° and Hampton, NY, 223° radials; Hampton; Groton, CT; to Norwich, CT. The airspace below 2,000 feet MSL that lies outside the United States and the airspace below 3,000 feet MSL between Kennedy, NY, 087° and 141° radials is excluded.

    V-379 [Removed] V-433 [Amended]

    From Dupont, DE; Yardley, PA; INT Yardley 047° and Kennedy, NY, 253° radials; INT Kennedy 253° and LaGuardia, NY, 213° radials; LaGuardia; Bridgeport, CT; INT Bridgeport 324° and Pawling, NY, 160° radials; Pawling; INT Pawling 304° and Rockdale, NY, 116° radials; Rockdale; INT Rockdale 325° and Syracuse, NY, 100° radials; to Syracuse.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on October 10, 2017. Gemechu Gelgelu, Acting Manager, Airspace Policy Group.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22235 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4910-13-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 18 CFR Part 35 [Docket No. RM18-1-000] Grid Reliability and Resilience Pricing AGENCY:

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Department of Energy.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule; Request for Comments.

    SUMMARY:

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) is inviting comments on the proposed rule published on October 10, 2017 in the Federal Register by the Commission at the direction of the Department of Energy.

    DATES:

    Interested persons are invited to submit comments on all matters and issues regarding the Proposal. Comments are due on or before October 23, 2017. Reply comments are due on or before November 7, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments must refer to Docket No. RM18-1-000 and must include the commenter's name, the organization they represent, if applicable, and their address.

    The Commission encourages comments to be filed electronically via the eFiling link on the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov. The Commission accepts most standard word processing formats. Documents created electronically using word processing software should be filed in native applications or print-to-PDF format and not in a scanned format. Commenters filing electronically do not need to make a paper filing.

    Commenters that are not able to file comments electronically must send an original of their comments to: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Secretary of the Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On October 10, 2017, pursuant to section 403 of the Department of Energy Organization Act,1 the Secretary of Energy (Secretary) published in the Federal Register a proposed rule for final action (Proposal) by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission).2

    1 42 U.S.C. 7173 (2012).

    2 82 FR 46940 (Oct. 10, 2017).

    All comments will be placed in the Commission's public files and may be viewed, printed, or downloaded remotely. Commenters on the Proposal are not required to serve copies of their comments on other commenters.

    Dated: October 2, 2017. Kimberly D. Bose, Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22215 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY 26 CFR Parts 1 and 301 Executive Order 13789—Second Report to the President on Identifying and Reducing Tax Regulatory Burdens AGENCY:

    Department of the Treasury.

    ACTION:

    Regulatory review.

    SUMMARY:

    On April 21, 2017, the President issued Executive Order 13789 (82 FR 19317), a directive designed to reduce tax regulatory burdens. The order directed the Secretary of the Treasury to identify significant tax regulations issued on or after January 1, 2016, that impose an undue financial burden on U.S. taxpayers, add undue complexity to the Federal tax laws, or exceed the statutory authority of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In an interim Report to the President dated June 22, 2017, Treasury identified eight such regulations. Executive Order 13789 further directs the Secretary to submit to the President and publish in the Federal Register a report recommending specific actions to mitigate the burden imposed by regulations identified in the interim report. This Second Report sets forth the Secretary's recommendations.

    DATES:

    October 16, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Austin Bramwell, Senior Advisor, Office of Tax Policy, (202) 622-7827 (not a toll-free call).

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Introduction

    This Second Report recommends actions to eliminate, and in other cases mitigate, consistent with law, the burdens imposed on taxpayers by eight regulations that the Department of the Treasury (Treasury) has identified for review under Executive Order 13789. As stated in the order, it is the policy of the President that tax regulations provide clarity and useful guidance. Recent regulations, however, have increased tax burdens and impeded economic growth. The order therefore calls for immediate action to reduce tax regulatory burdens and provide useful and simplified tax guidance.

    The order directed the Secretary of the Treasury to identify significant tax regulations issued on or after January 1, 2016, that (i) impose an undue financial burden on U.S. taxpayers, (ii) add undue complexity to the Federal tax laws, or (iii) exceed the statutory authority of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). In an interim Report to the President dated June 22, 2017 (the “June 22 Report”), Treasury identified eight such regulations. Executive Order 13789 further directs the Secretary to submit to the President a report recommending “specific actions to mitigate the burden imposed by regulations identified in the interim report.”

    This Second Report sets forth the Secretary's recommendations. Treasury expects to issue additional reports on reducing tax regulatory burdens, including, as directed in the order, the status of Treasury's actions recommended in this Second Report.

    Treasury Department Retrospective Regulatory Review

    Treasury is committed to reducing complexity and lessening the burden of tax regulations. In response to Executive Order 13789, Treasury's Office of Tax Policy completed a comprehensive review of all tax regulations issued in 2016 and January 2017. The June 22 Report identified eight proposed, temporary, or final regulations for withdrawal, revocation, or modification. Treasury continues to analyze all recently issued significant regulations and is considering possible reforms of several recent regulations not identified in the June 22 Report. These include regulations under Section 871(m), relating to payments treated as U.S. source dividends, and the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act.

    In addition, in furtherance of the policies stated in Executive Order 13789, Executive Order 13771, and Executive Order 13777,1 Treasury and the IRS have initiated a comprehensive review, coordinated by the Treasury Regulatory Reform Task Force, of all tax regulations, regardless of when they were issued. Thus, most of the regulations subject to this review predate January 1, 2016. This review will identify tax regulations that are unnecessary, create undue complexity, impose excessive burdens, or fail to provide clarity and useful guidance, and Treasury and the IRS will pursue reform or revocation of those regulations. Included in the review are longstanding temporary or proposed regulations that have not expired or been finalized. As part of the process coordinated by the Treasury Regulatory Reform Task Force, the IRS Office of Chief Counsel has already identified over 200 regulations for potential revocation, most of which have been outstanding for many years. These regulations remain in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) but are, to varying degrees, unnecessary, duplicative, or obsolete, and force taxpayers to navigate unnecessarily complex or confusing rules.2 Treasury and the IRS expect to begin the rulemaking process for revoking these regulations in the fourth quarter of 2017. Treasury and the IRS are also seeking to streamline rules where possible. Later reports and guidance will provide details on the regulations identified for possible action, the reasons that they may be revoked, and the manner in which revocation would occur.

    1 Executive Order 13771, titled “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,” manages the costs associated with the regulatory compliance by, among other things, generally requiring the identification of two regulations for repeal for every new regulation that is proposed. Executive Order 13777, titled “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda,” sets forth procedures for implementing and enforcing regulatory reform.

    2 See Executive Order 13777 § 3(f) (directing “each agency head [to] prioritize” revocation of regulations which are “outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective”).

    Treasury has considered carefully the burdens that the eight regulations identified in the June 22 Report impose and, in conjunction with the IRS Office of Chief Counsel, has extensively studied possible actions to provide relief. In response to a public request for comments following the June 22 Report, Treasury received over 140 comments from the public—as well as thousands of duplicate form comments—concerning the potential modification or revocation of the eight regulations identified.3 The thrust of the comments varied widely, with some recommending that Treasury withdraw one or more of the regulations and others requesting that Treasury retain those same regulations. Treasury has carefully reviewed and considered the comments and possible reforms. One specific action—guidance delaying the documentation regulations under Section 385—has already been taken by the IRS in Notice 2017-36. As described below, Treasury now recommends, consistent with law, that two proposed regulations be withdrawn entirely, three temporary or final regulations be revoked in substantial part, and the remaining three regulations all be substantially revised.

    3 Comments can be found at the following Web site: https://www.regulations.gov/docketBrowser?rpp=25&so=DESC&sb=comment DueDate&po=0&dct=PS&D=IRS-2017-0012.

    Proposed Regulations To Be Withdrawn Entirely 1. Proposed Regulations Under Section 2704 on Restrictions on Liquidation of an Interest for Estate, Gift and Generation-Skipping Transfer Taxes (REG-163113-02; 81 FR 51413)

    Section 2704 addresses the valuation, for wealth transfer tax purposes, of interests in family-controlled entities. In limited cases, Section 2704 disregards restrictions on the ability to liquidate family-controlled entities when determining the fair market value of an interest for estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax purposes. Also in limited cases, Section 2704 treats lapses of voting or liquidation rights as if they were transfers for gift and estate tax purposes. The proposed regulations, through a web of dense rules and definitions, would have narrowed longstanding exceptions and dramatically expanded the class of restrictions that are disregarded under Section 2704. In addition, the proposed regulations would have required an entity interest to be valued as if disregarded restrictions did not exist, either in the entity's governing documents or under state law. No exceptions would have been allowed for interests in active or operating businesses.

    The goal of the proposed regulations was to counteract changes in state statutes and developments in case law that have eroded Section 2704's applicability and facilitated the use of family-controlled entities to generate artificial valuation discounts, such as for lack of control and marketability, and thereby depress the value of property for gift and estate tax purposes. Commenters warned, however, that the valuation requirements of the proposed regulations were unclear and that their eff on traditional valuation discounts was uncertain. In particular, commenters argued that it was not feasible to value an entity interest as if no restrictions on withdrawal or liquidation existed in either the entity's governing documents or state law. A legal vacuum in which there is no law relevant to an interest holder's right to withdraw or liquidate is impossible, commenters asserted, and, therefore, cannot meaningfully be applied as a valuation assumption. Commenters also argued that the proposed regulations could have produced unrealistic valuations. For example, the lack of a market for interests in family-owned operating businesses is a reality that, commenters argued, should continue to be taken into account when determining fair market value.

    After reviewing these comments, Treasury and the IRS now believe that the proposed regulations' approach to the problem of artificial valuation discounts is unworkable. In particular, Treasury and the IRS currently agree with commenters that taxpayers, their advisors, the IRS, and the courts would not, as a practical matter, be able to determine the value of an entity interest based on the fanciful assumption of a world where no legal authority exists. Given that uncertainty, it is unclear whether the valuation rules of the proposed regulations would have even succeeded in curtailing artificial valuation discounts. Moreover, merely to reach the conclusion that an entity interest should be valued as if restrictions did not exist, the proposed regulations would have compelled taxpayers to master lengthy and difficult rules on family control and the rights of interest holders. The burden of compliance with the proposed regulations would have been excessive, given the uncertainty of any policy gains. Finally, the proposed regulations could have affected valuation discounts even where discount factors, such as lack of control or lack of a market, were not created artificially as a value-depressing device.

    In light of these concerns, Treasury and the IRS currently believe that these proposed regulations should be withdrawn in their entirety. Treasury and the IRS plan to publish a withdrawal of the proposed regulations shortly in the Federal Register.

    2. Proposed Regulations Under Section 103 on Definition of Political Subdivision (REG-129067-15; 81 FR 8870)

    Section 103 excludes from a taxpayer's gross income the interest on state or local bonds, including obligations of political subdivisions. Proposed regulations would have required a “political subdivision” to possess not only significant sovereign power, but also to meet enhanced standards to show a governmental purpose and governmental control. Some commenters argued that settled law only requires a political subdivision to possess sovereign powers. Many commenters also argued that the proposed regulations would force costly and burdensome changes in entity structure to meet the new requirements. Treasury and the IRS continue to believe that some enhanced standards for qualifying as a political subdivision may be appropriate. After careful consideration of the comments on the proposed regulations, however, Treasury and the IRS now believe that regulations having as far-reaching an impact on existing legal structures as the proposed regulations are not justified.

    Thus, while Treasury and the IRS will continue to study the legal issues relating to political subdivisions, Treasury and the IRS currently believe that these proposed regulations should be withdrawn in their entirety, and plan to publish a withdrawal of the proposed regulations shortly in the Federal Register. Treasury and the IRS may propose more targeted guidance in the future after further study of the relevant legal issues.

    Regulations To Consider Revoking in Part 3. Final Regulations Under Section 7602 on the Participation of a Person Described in Section 6103(n) in a Summons Interview (T.D. 9778; 81 FR 45409)

    These final regulations provide that the IRS may use private contractors to assist the IRS in auditing taxpayers. Under the regulations, the IRS may contract with persons who are not government employees, and those private contractors may “participate fully” in the IRS's interview of taxpayers or other witnesses summoned to provide testimony during an examination. In particular, the regulations allow private contractors to receive and review records produced in response to a summons, be present during interviews of witnesses, and question witnesses under oath, under the guidance of an IRS officer or employee. These regulations were issued as temporary regulations in 2014 and were finalized in 2016.

    Although only two comments were submitted during the public comment period, these regulations have since attracted public attention and criticism. In particular, the IRS's ability to hire outside attorneys as contractors and have them question witnesses during a summons interview has raised concerns. After the IRS hired an outside law firm to assist with the audit of a corporate taxpayer, a federal court found that the “idea that the IRS can `farm out' legal assistance to a private law firm is by no means established by prior practice” and noted that it “may lead to further scrutiny by Congress.” 4 While the court determined, based on the statute, that the IRS had the legal authority to enlist the outside attorneys, the court was “troubled by [the law firm's] level of involvement in this audit.” 5 The Senate Finance Committee subsequently approved legislation that would prohibit the IRS from using any private contractors for any purpose in summons proceedings. This legislation has not been enacted into law.

    4United States v. Microsoft Corp., 154 F. Supp. 3d 1134, 1143 (W.D. Wash. 2015).

    5Id.

    After reviewing and considering the foregoing concerns and the public comments received, Treasury and the IRS are looking into proposing a prospectively effective amendment to these regulations in order to narrow their scope by prohibiting the IRS from enlisting outside attorneys to participate in an examination, including a summons interview. Under the amendment currently contemplated by Treasury and the IRS, outside attorneys would not be permitted to question witnesses on behalf of the IRS, nor would they be permitted to play a behind-the-scenes role, such as by reviewing summoned records or consulting on IRS legal strategy. When the IRS enlists outside attorneys to perform the investigative functions ordinarily performed by IRS employees, the government risks losing control of its own investigation.

    IRS investigators wield significant power to question witnesses under oath, to receive and review books and records, and to make discretionary strategic judgments during an audit— with potentially serious consequences for the taxpayer. The current regulation requires the IRS to retain authority over important decisions, but the risk of a private attorney taking practical control may simply be too great. These powers should be exercised solely by government employees committed to serve the public interest, not by outside attorneys. These concerns outweigh any countervailing need for the IRS to contract with outside attorneys. Treasury remains confident that the core functions of questioning witnesses and conducting investigations are well within the expertise and ability of the IRS's dedicated attorneys and examination agents.

    Although Treasury and the IRS are currently considering proposing an amendment to the regulations so that outside lawyers would no longer be allowed to participate in an examination, Treasury and the IRS currently intend that the regulations would continue to allow outside subject-matter experts to participate in summons proceedings. In certain highly complex examinations, effective tax administration may require the specialized knowledge of an economist, an engineer, a foreign attorney who is a specialist in foreign law, or other subject-matter experts. In some cases, there is a compelling need to look outside the IRS for expertise that the IRS's own employees lack. Because experts have a circumscribed role in providing subject-matter knowledge, outside experts do not pose the same risks as outside attorneys. Outside experts should thus continue to be permitted to assist IRS by reviewing summoned materials and, if necessary, by posing questions to witnesses under the guidance and in the presence of IRS employees. Such a role would be limited to the small subset of cases in which the IRS requires the assistance of a subject-matter expert to ensure effective tax administration.

    4. Regulations Under Section 707 and Section 752 on Treatment of Partnership Liabilities (T.D. 9788; 81 FR 69282)

    These partnership tax regulations include: (i) Proposed and temporary regulations governing how liabilities are allocated for purposes of disguised sale treatment; and (ii) proposed and temporary regulations for determining whether so-called “bottom-dollar” guarantees create the economic risk of loss necessary to be taken into account as a recourse liability.

    The first rule would have changed the tax treatment of forming many partnerships. In particular, for disguised sale purposes, the temporary regulations would, in general terms, have applied the rules relating to non-recourse liabilities to formations of partnerships involving recourse liabilities. According to commenters, the first rule was promulgated without adequate consideration of its impact. While Treasury and the IRS believe that the temporary regulations' novel approach to addressing disguised sale treatment merits further study, Treasury and the IRS agree that such a far-reaching change should be studied systematically. Treasury and the IRS, therefore, are considering whether the proposed and temporary regulations relating to disguised sales should be revoked and the prior regulations reinstated.

    By contrast, Treasury and the IRS currently believe that the second set of regulations relating to bottom-dollar guarantees should be retained. Before the proposed and temporary regulations relating to bottom-dollar guarantees were issued, the liability allocation rules permitted sophisticated taxpayers to create basis artificially and thereby shelter or defer income tax liability. Bottom-dollar guarantees permitted taxpayers to achieve these results without meaningful economic risk, which is inconsistent with the economic-risk-of-loss principle underlying the debt allocation rules for recourse obligations. Thus, Treasury and the IRS continue to believe, consistent with the views of a number of commentators, that the temporary regulations on bottom-dollar guarantees are needed to prevent abuses and do not meaningfully increase regulatory burdens for the taxpayers affected. Consequently, although Treasury and the IRS will continue to study the technical issues and consider comments, they do not plan to propose substantial changes to the temporary regulations on bottom-dollar guarantees. Treasury and the IRS are reviewing and considering ways to rationalize and lessen the burden of partnership tax regulations governing liabilities and allocations more generally. In their review, Treasury and the IRS will take into account the ways in which the rules under different sections of the Internal Revenue Code interact, and may propose further changes to the relevant liability or allocation regulations.

    5. Final and Temporary Regulations Under Section 385 on the Treatment of Certain Interests in Corporations as Stock or Indebtedness (T.D. 9790; 81 FR 72858)

    These final and temporary regulations address the classification of related-party debt as debt or equity for U.S. federal income tax purposes. Treasury received a very large number of comments on the Section 385 regulations. Many supported the regulations, while others were critical.

    The regulations are primarily comprised of (i) rules establishing minimum documentation requirements that ordinarily must be satisfied in order for purported debt obligations among related parties to be treated as debt for federal tax purposes (the “documentation regulations”); and (ii) rules that treat as stock certain debt that is issued by a corporation to a controlling shareholder in a distribution or in another related-party transaction that achieves an economically similar result (the “distribution regulations”). Although they each address debt/equity considerations, these two parts of the overall Section 385 regulations are very different in purpose, scope and application. The documentation rules apply principally to domestic issuers and are generally concerned with establishing certain minimum standards of practice so that the tax character of an interest can be objectively evaluated. The distribution regulations, on the other hand, principally affect interests issued to related-party non-U.S. holders and are the rules that limit earnings-stripping, including in the context of inversions and foreign takeovers. Consistent with these fundamental differences, Treasury and the IRS currently plan to take different approaches to the two parts of these regulations.

    Potential revocation of documentation regulations. Many commenters strongly criticized the compliance burdens that those regulations imposed. Others urged that the regulations be retained. Several commenters argued that the burden imposed by the documentation regulations would be severe for all similarly situated taxpayers, and would exceed the perceived benefits for tax administration. Treasury and the IRS now agree with commenters that some requirements of the documentation regulations departed substantially from current practice and would have compelled corporations to build expensive new systems to satisfy the numerous tests required by the regulations. Treasury and the IRS do not believe that taxpayers should have to expend time and resources designing and building systems to comply with rules that may be modified to alleviate undue burdens of compliance. Accordingly, shortly after issuing the June 22 Report, Treasury and the IRS announced in Notice 2017-36 that application of the documentation rules would be delayed until 2019.

    After further study of the documentation regulations, Treasury and the IRS are considering a proposal to revoke the documentation regulations as issued. Treasury and the IRS are actively considering the development of revised documentation rules that would be substantially simplified and streamlined in a manner that will lessen their burden on U.S. corporations, while requiring sufficient legal documentation and other information for tax administration purposes. In place of any revoked regulations, Treasury and the IRS would develop and propose streamlined documentation rules, with a prospective effective date that would allow time for comments and compliance. Consideration is being given, in particular, to modifying significantly the requirement, contained in the documentation regulations, of a reasonable expectation of ability to pay indebtedness. This aspect of the documentation regulations proved particularly problematic. The treatment of ordinary trade payables under the documentation regulations is also being reexamined. It is also expected that any proposed streamlined documentation rules would include certain technical, conforming changes to the definitional provisions of the Section 385 regulations.

    Distribution regulations retained pending enactment of tax reform. The distribution regulations address inversions and takeovers of U.S. corporations by limiting the ability of corporations to generate additional interest deductions without new investment in the United States. In recent years, earnings-stripping by foreign-parented multinational corporations, as well as corporate inversions whereby U.S. corporations become foreign corporations and engage in earnings stripping, frequently as a tax artifice have put U.S. corporations at a competitive disadvantage compared to their foreign peers. Treasury is committed to the Administration's goals of leveling the playing field for U.S. businesses, so that they may compete freely and fairly in the global economy, and implementing tax rules that reduce the distortion of capital and ownership decisions through earnings stripping and similar practices.

    Commenters have criticized the complexity and breadth of the distribution rules. They criticized in particular the funding rule that addresses multiple-step transactions and the burdens of tracking multiple transactions among affiliated companies over long periods of time. Treasury understands that the distribution rules are a blunt instrument for accomplishing their tax policy objectives, and continues to consider how the distribution rules might be made more targeted and compliance with the regulations made less onerous. At the same time, Treasury continues to believe firmly in maintaining safeguards against earnings-stripping and diminishing incentives for inversions and foreign takeovers.

    Treasury has consistently affirmed that legislative changes can most effectively address the distortions and base erosion caused by excessive earnings stripping, as well as the general tax incentives for U.S. companies to engage in inversions. Treasury is actively working with Congress on fundamental tax reform that should prevent base erosion and fix the structural deficiencies in the current U.S. tax system. Tax reform is expected to obviate the need for the distribution regulations and make it possible for these regulations to be revoked.

    In the meantime, after careful consideration, Treasury believes that proposing to revoke the existing distribution regulations before the enactment of fundamental tax reform, could make existing problems worse. If legislation does not entirely eliminate the need for the distribution regulations, Treasury will reassess the distribution rules and Treasury and the IRS may then propose more streamlined and targeted regulations.

    Regulations To Consider Substantially Revising 6. Final Regulations Under Section 367 on the Treatment of Certain Transfers of Property to Foreign Corporations (T.D. 9803; 81 FR 91012)

    Section 367 of the Internal Revenue Code generally imposes immediate or future U.S. tax on transfers of property (tangible and intangible) to foreign corporations, subject to certain exceptions, including an exception for certain property transferred for use in the active conduct of a trade or business outside of the United States. Prior regulations provided favorable treatment for foreign goodwill and going concern value. To address difficulties in administering these exceptions, these regulations eliminated the ability of taxpayers to transfer foreign goodwill and going-concern value to a foreign corporation without immediate or future U.S. income tax. However, no active trade or business exception was provided for such transfers. Commenters noted that the legislative history to Section 367 indicated that Congress anticipated that outbound transfers of foreign goodwill and going-concern value would generally not be subject to Section 367. Some commenters requested, if the regulations were not revoked, that transfers of foreign goodwill and going-concern value be made eligible for the active trade or business exception in circumstances not ripe for abuse.

    After considering the comments and studying further the legal and policy issues, Treasury and the IRS have concluded that an exception to the current regulations may be justified by both the structure of the statute and its legislative history. Thus, to address taxpayers' concerns about the breadth of the regulations, the Office of Tax Policy and IRS are actively working to develop a proposal that would expand the scope of the active trade or business exception described above to include relief for outbound transfers of foreign goodwill and going-concern value attributable to a foreign branch under circumstances with limited potential for abuse and administrative difficulties, including those involving valuation. Treasury and the IRS currently expect to propose regulations providing such an exception in the near term.

    7. Temporary Regulations Under Section 337(d) on Certain Transfers of Property to Regulated Investment Companies (RICs) and Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) (T.D. 9770; 81 FR 36793)

    These temporary regulations amend existing rules on transfers of property by C corporations to REITs and RICs generally. In addition, the regulations provide rules relating to newly-enacted provisions of the Protecting Americans from Tax Hikes Act of 2015 (the “PATH Act”). The PATH Act's provisions were intended to prevent certain spinoff transactions involving transfers of property by C corporations to REITs from qualifying for non-recognition treatment. Commenters criticized several aspects of the regulations. According to commenters, for example, the REIT spin-off rules could result in over-inclusion of gain in certain situations, particularly where a large corporation acquires a small corporation that engaged in a Section 355 spin-off and the large corporation subsequently makes a REIT election.

    Treasury and the IRS agree that the temporary regulations may produce inappropriate results in some cases. In particular, Treasury and the IRS agree, for example, that the regulations may cause too much gain in certain cases to be recognized. Thus, Treasury and the IRS are considering revisions that would limit the potential taxable gain recognized in situations in which, because of the application of the predecessor and successor rule in Regulation Section 1.337(d)-7T(f)(2), gain recognition is required in excess of the amount that would have been recognized if a party to a spin-off had directly transferred assets to a REIT. In a case in which a smaller corporation that is party to a spin-off merges into a larger corporation in a tax-free reorganization, and the larger corporation makes a REIT election after the spin-off, the temporary regulations require immediate gain recognition with respect to all of the assets of the larger corporation. The proposed revisions under consideration by Treasury would substantially reduce the immediately taxed gain of the larger corporation by limiting gain recognition to the assets of the smaller corporation. In addition, other technical changes to narrow further the application of the rules are currently being considered. With these contemplated changes incorporated, Treasury and the IRS believe the revised regulations would more closely track the intent of Congress.

    8. Final Regulations Under Section 987 on Income and Currency Gain or Loss With Respect to a Section 987 Qualified Business Unit (T.D. 9794; 81 FR 88806)

    These final regulations provide rules for: (i) Translating income from branch operations conducted in a currency different from the branch owner's functional currency into the owner's functional currency; (ii) calculating foreign currency gain or loss with respect to the branch's financial assets and liabilities; and (iii) recognizing such foreign currency gain or loss when the branch makes certain transfers of any property to its owner. Commenters argued that the transition rule in the final regulations imposes an undue financial burden because it disregards losses calculated for years prior to the transition but not previously recognized. Many taxpayers have also commented that the method prescribed by the final regulations for calculating foreign currency gain or loss is unduly complex and financially burdensome to apply, particularly where the final regulations differ from financial accounting rules.

    After reviewing these comments and meeting with a significant number of affected taxpayers in different industries, Treasury and the IRS believe that the regulations have proved difficult to apply for many taxpayers. To address these difficulties, Treasury and the IRS currently expect to issue guidance that would permit taxpayers to elect to defer the application of Regulation Sections 1.987-1 through 1.981-10 until at least 2019, depending on the beginning date of the taxpayer's taxable year.

    In addition, Treasury and the IRS also intend to propose modifications to the final regulations to permit taxpayers to elect to adopt a simplified method of calculating Section 987 gain and loss and translating Section 987 income and loss, subject to certain limitations on the timing of recognition of Section 987 loss. Under one variation of a simplified methodology currently being considered, taxpayers would treat all assets and liabilities of a Section 987 qualified business unit (QBU) as marked items and translate all items of income and expense at the average exchange rate for the year. This methodology generally would result in determinations of amounts of Section 987 gain or loss that are consistent with amounts of translation gain or loss that would be determined under applicable financial accounting rules, as well as under the 1991 proposed Section 987 regulations.

    In this connection, the IRS and the Office of Tax Policy are considering alternative loss recognition timing limitations that would apply to electing taxpayers. Under the base limitation under consideration, the electing taxpayer would be permitted to recognize net Section 987 losses only to the extent of net Section 987 gains recognized in prior or subsequent years. As a possible additional approach to limiting losses, the IRS and the Office of Tax Policy are also considering the administrability of a limitation under which the electing taxpayer would defer recognition of all Section 987 losses and gains until the earlier of (i) the year that the trade or business conducted by the Section 987 QBU ceases to be performed by any member of its controlled group or (ii) the year substantially all of the assets and activities of the QBU are transferred outside of the controlled group.

    Finally, the IRS and the Office of Tax Policy are considering alternatives to the transition rules in the final regulations. One alternative would be to allow taxpayers that elect to apply the loss limitations applicable to the simplified methodology discussed above to carry forward unrealized Section 987 gains and losses, measured as of the transition date with appropriate adjustments, and subject to such loss limitations. A second alternative under consideration would be to allow taxpayers adopting the final regulations to elect to translate all items on the QBU's opening balance sheet on the transition date at the spot exchange rate, but not carry forward any unrealized Section 987 gains or losses.

    David J. Kautter, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Tax Policy.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22205 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4810-25-P
    DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS 38 CFR Part 17 RIN 2900-AP46 Prosthetic and Rehabilitative Items and Services AGENCY:

    Department of Veterans Affairs.

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) proposes to revise its medical regulations related to providing prosthetic and rehabilitative items as medical services to veterans. These revisions would reorganize and update the current regulations related to prosthetic and rehabilitative items, primarily to clarify eligibility for prosthetic and other rehabilitative items and services, and to define the types of items and services available to eligible veterans.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received by VA on or before December 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Written comments may be submitted by email through http://www.regulations.gov; by mail or hand delivery to Director, Regulations Management (00REG), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Room 1063B, Washington, DC 20420; or by fax to (202) 273-9026. Comments should indicate that they are submitted in response to “RIN 2900-AP46, Prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services.” Copies of comments received will be available for public inspection in the Office of Regulation Policy and Management, Room 1063B, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday (except holidays). Please call (202) 461-4902 for an appointment. (This is not a toll-free number.) In addition, during the comment period, comments may be viewed online through the Federal Docket Management System (FDMS) at http://www.regulations.gov.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Penny Nechanicky, National Program Director for Prosthetic and Sensory Aids Service (10P4RK), Department of Veterans Affairs, 810 Vermont Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20420; (202) 461-0337. (This is not a toll-free number.) [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Section 1710 of title 38, United States Code (U.S.C.), authorizes VA to provide veterans with, among other things, “medical services” when VA determines that they are “needed.” “Medical services” is further defined in 38 U.S.C. 1701(6)(F) to include the following items and services, for veterans who are otherwise receiving care or services under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C.: Wheelchairs, artificial limbs, trusses, and similar appliances; special clothing made necessary by the wearing of prosthetic appliances; and such other supplies or services as the Secretary determines to be reasonable and necessary. 38 U.S.C. 1701(6)(F)(i)-(iii). The language in clauses (i) through (iii) of section 1701(6)(F) is the source of VA's authority to provide prosthetic and rehabilitative items and related services to veterans as necessary items and services (i.e., “medical services”). Historically, we have interpreted section 1701(6)(F)(iii) to authorize VA to provide other supplies and services only to the extent that they are similar or related to the expressly listed items in sections 1701(6)(F)(i) and (ii), i.e., wheelchairs, artificial limbs, trusses or similar appliances, and special clothing made necessary by the wearing of prosthetic appliances. We base this interpretation on tenets of statutory construction and opinions of VA's Office of General Counsel. See 2A Norman J. Singer, Statutes and Statutory Construction § 47.17 (6th ed. 2000) (explaining that as a matter of statutory interpretation, where general words follow specific words, “the general words are construed to embrace only objects similar in nature to those objects enumerated by the preceding specific words”). See also VAOPGCADV 7-2009, VAOPGCADV 9-2005, VAOPGCCONCL-8-98.

    VA has considered those items expressly listed in section 1701(6)(F)(i) and (ii) as medically necessary because such items assist a veteran in compensating for the loss of mobility or loss of other functional abilities. Thus for a supply (i.e., hereafter referred to as an item) or service to be similar in nature to what is enumerated in section 1701(6)(F)(i) and (ii), it must assist a veteran to compensate for loss of mobility or loss of other functional abilities. For such items and services to be provided pursuant to section 1701(6)(F)(iii), the Secretary must first determine that the item or service could assist veterans to compensate for loss of mobility or loss of other functional abilities. Next, under that provision, the Secretary must determine that they are “reasonable and necessary.” Once the Secretary makes these two determinations regarding an item or service under 1701(6)(F)(iii), VA may include them in the medical benefits package and provide them to individual eligible veterans as medical services if they are determined to be “needed” as required by section 1710(a) as implemented by 38 CFR 17.38(b).

    VA's authority as described above to provide medically needed prosthetic and similar items to all veterans who are otherwise receiving care or services under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C. was established by section 103(a) of Public Law 104-262, The Veterans' Health Care Eligibility Reform Act of 1996, which amended the definition of medical services in 38 U.S.C. 1701(6). Prior to the enactment of Public Law 104-262, VA was effectively prohibited from providing prosthetic and similar items to most nonservice-connected veterans except in preparation for a hospital admission or to obviate the need for hospital admission. Section 103(b) of Public Law 104-262 further directed VA to prescribe guidelines for the expanded prosthetics eligibility in section 103(a). These guidelines were issued through national Veterans Health Administration (VHA) policies beginning with VHA Directive 96-069 (as published November 7, 1996), culminating in VHA Handbook 1173.1 (as last published November 2, 2000). VA has further expressly listed “durable medical equipment and prosthetic and orthotic devices” as medical services available to eligible veterans as part of VA's medical benefits package in 38 CFR 17.38(a)(1)(viii). Although VA administers its prosthetics program with the support of § 17.38(a)(1)(viii) as well as multiple VHA policies, neither § 17.38 (except for § 17.38(c)) nor these policies are appropriately descriptive of VA's current practices in providing prosthetic and similar items. For instance, 17.38(a)(1)(viii) provides that eligible veterans may receive prosthetic and similar items as medical services, and § 17.38(b) further provides that such items may be considered medically necessary if they are “determined by appropriate healthcare professionals that the care is needed to promote, preserve, or restore the health” of eligible veterans; however, the “promote, preserve, or restore” criteria in § 17.38(b) are not specific enough to properly articulate the concept of medical necessity in the context of prosthetic and similar items and services, versus for medical services more generally. VA finds it necessary now to clarify its current practices and to propose certain changes with regard to the provision of prosthetic and similar items and services, and such clarification and proposed changes are appropriate for a rulemaking because they would affect VA's provision of prosthetic and similar items and services. We would not seek to substantively revise § 17.38 in this manner, however, as it would be cumbersome and potentially confusing to establish additional eligibility and other administrative criteria for prosthetic and similar items and services as a specific type of medical service. We would seek instead to establish new regulations in proposed §§ 17.3200-.3250, and would remove a current but defunct regulation specifically related to the provision of prosthetic and similar items, 38 CFR 17.150. Section 17.150 was first promulgated in 1967 and was never substantively revised to reflect eligibility for prosthetic and similar items as provided in section 103(a) of Public Law 104-262 and § 17.38(a)(1)(viii). Although § 17.150 does establish that there must be a VA determination of “feasibility and medical need” prior to the provision of prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services to veterans, the phrase “feasibility and medical need” does not properly articulate the concept of medical necessity in a manner that is consistent with current VA practices. Further, § 17.150 only provides a limited list of examples of prosthetic items and services that are provided to eligible veterans, which could be misinterpreted to be an exhaustive list. Removing § 17.150 and establishing proposed §§ 17.3200-.3250 would, among other things as described throughout this rulemaking, articulate the concept of medical necessity for these items and services in a manner consistent with current VA authority and practice, would provide a broader and expressly non-exhaustive list as well as definitions for items and services that may be provided, and would update veteran eligibility for these items and services in a manner consistent with section 103(a) of Public Law 104-262 and with § 17.38(a)(1)(viii).

    The changes proposed in this rulemaking would also clarify the provision of prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services that VA provides as “medical services” under sections 1701 and 1710, versus other similar items and services that VA provides under other authorities. Congress has enacted specific statutory provisions other than sections 1701 and 1710 to authorize VA to furnish veterans with particular items and services in connection with a disability or to assist veterans in overcoming a disability. For example, sections 1714(b) and 1717(c) authorize VA to furnish devices to blind and deaf veterans, respectively, for the broad purpose of “overcoming the disability” of blindness or deafness, without the criterion that such devices be considered medically necessary. This is not to say that such items and services could not be interpreted as being medically necessary. Rather, the enactment of statutes other than sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a) demonstrates Congressional intent that the items and services provided under these other statutes are to be provided in accordance with the criteria in those statutes and their implementing regulations. VA has established different regulatory criteria implementing these other statutes to control the provision of these other items (see, for instance, 38 CFR 17.3100 et seq., which controls the provision of home improvements and structural alterations permitted by 38 U.S.C. 1717(a)(2)). We propose to establish this distinction between sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a), and other statutes that control the provision of certain items and services, more clearly in proposed section 17.3200; specifically, we would provide a table of the statutory and regulatory authorities for items and services provided outside of sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a). This table would include authorities for items and services provided to veterans, but would not include authorities for items and services provided to non-veteran beneficiaries (such as the authorities to provide items necessary for care of a newborn as permitted by 38 U.S.C. 1786, or items necessary for care of certain dependents as permitted by 38 U.S.C. 1781). We do not believe it is necessary to include authorities related to non-veterans in the proposed table, as proposed sections 17.3200 through 17.3250 only address the provision of these items and services to veterans.

    17.3200. Purpose and Scope

    Proposed § 17.3200 would establish a clearer purpose and scope for the provision of prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services as “medical services” than what is articulated in current § 17.150, to distinguish VA's provision of prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services as medical services under sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710 from VA's provision of other items and services under other authorities. Proposed § 17.3200(a) would state that the purpose of proposed §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250 would be to establish eligibility and other criteria for the provision of prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services to veterans as medical services under sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a). These items and services would be listed in proposed § 17.3230, and we would reference that section for ease of use.

    Proposed § 17.3200(b) would establish that the scope of proposed §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250 would be limited to those prosthetic or rehabilitative items and services provided by VA as medical services under sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a), and would identify in a table other items or services controlled by other statutes and regulations. We propose to include this table because these items and services have different criteria (related to eligibility, restrictions, etc.) in accordance with distinct legal authorities other than sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a). The proposed rule would help reduce confusion by telling users where to find the other statutes and regulations relevant to these other items and services.

    17.3210. Definitions

    Proposed § 17.3210 would establish definitions relevant to the prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services to be provided by VA as medical services under sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a). The items and services that would be defined in this section are either expressly listed as medical services under section 1701(6)(F)(i) and (ii), or are similar or related to such expressly listed items and services because they are similarly deemed “needed” (as required by section 1710(a)), because they may be medically necessary to assist a veteran to compensate for loss of mobility or loss of other functional abilities as explained previously in this rulemaking. We note that some of the definitions below would propose additional qualifying criteria related to the items or services themselves. These additional qualifying criteria would be related to accomplishing specific tasks associated with the veteran's rehabilitation plan in addition to the general requirement that the item be deemed medically necessary for the veteran.

    “Activities of daily living (ADL)” would be defined as specific personal care activities that are required for basic daily maintenance and sustenance, to include eating, toileting, bathing, grooming, dressing and undressing, and mobility. This definition of ADLs is consistent with other VA regulatory definitions or uses of the term. See §§ 17.36, 51.120, 52.2, and 61.1.

    “Adaptive household item” would be defined as a durable household item that has been adapted to compensate for, or that by design compensates for, loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and is necessary to complete one or more ADLs in the home or other residential setting. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of the word “adaptive” as something that compensates for loss of function, and we believe the further restrictions in this definition as explained below better explain the scope of items that would be considered covered. For instance, we would require that the adaptive household item must be “necessary” to complete one or more ADLs, because we believe this is a reasonable restriction for equipment that would be used in an individual's home or other residential setting, and would ensure that common household items are not provided except in narrow circumstances when a veteran cannot complete an ADL without such an item due to the veteran's loss of function. The definition of “adaptive household item” would further provide examples of such items, to include adaptive eating utensils, shower stools or chairs, hooks to assist in buttoning clothing, or shoe horns. The definition of “adaptive household item” would exclude household furniture or furnishing (which, as discussed later in this proposed rule, we would define as an item commonly used to make a home habitable or otherwise used to ornament a home, including but not limited to tables, chairs, desks, lamps, cabinets, non-hospital beds, curtains, carpet(s), etc.) because we do not find that common household furniture or furnishings are generally necessary to complete an ADL. For instance, a dining table is associated with the ADL of eating, but is distinguishable from an adaptive utensil that may be required to complete the ADL of eating. We further clarify that certain specialized items that may be medically necessary and that could be interpreted as furniture (such as hospital beds) would be expressly included under the proposed definition of “home medical equipment” as explained later in this proposed rule. The definition of “adaptive household item” would also expressly exclude an “improvement or structural alteration” which we would define in this section the same as it is defined in 38 CFR 17.3101 (i.e., a modification to a home or to an existing feature or fixture of a home, including repairs to or replacement of previously improved or altered features or fixtures) because such improvements or alterations are authorized by section 1717(a)(2) and 38 CFR 17.3100 et seq., and are not within the scope of these proposed regulations, as stated in the table in proposed § 17.3200(b). The definition of “adaptive household item” would further exclude household appliances (which, as discussed later in this proposed rule, we would define as equipment for use in the home for performance of domestic chores or other domestic tasks, including but not limited to a refrigerator, stove, washing machine, and vacuum cleaner), except as necessary to complete an ADL, because generally most household appliances cannot be adapted to compensate, or by design do not compensate for, functional loss in such a manner as to be considered necessary to complete ADLs as defined above. An exception to this general exclusion would be permitted when the appliance would be necessary to complete an ADL, such as the provision of a blender or other food processing device to a veteran with a diagnosed swallowing disorder who must have all food pureed in order to complete the ADL of eating. In contrast, appliances that are commonly related to eating but not necessary to complete the ADL of eating, such as stoves or microwaves, would not be provided. We further would clarify that the definition of “adaptive household item” would exclude any requirement that VA furnish such items in such a manner as to relieve any other person or entity of a contractual obligation to furnish these items to the veteran. This is because such items would not be needed as they have otherwise been provided for. For example, a veteran may have contracted with a residence or residential setting to furnish adaptive household items to the veteran.

    “Adaptive recreation equipment” would be defined as an item that is designed to compensate for, or that by design compensates for, loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and is necessary for the veteran to actively and regularly participate in a sport, recreation, or leisure activity to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals. The additional requirement that these items be deemed necessary for active and regular participation in an activity to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals, which would be documented in the veteran's medical record, ensures that items are only provided when their regular use is specifically tied to a medical goal, and not provided merely to support a veteran's participation in an activity only for personal enjoyment. Examples of such equipment VA could provide to veterans include mono-skis and specially designed wheelchairs to play sports such as basketball.

    “Cognitive device” would be defined as an item that compensates for a cognitive impairment and that is used to maintain or improve a veteran's functional capabilities. Examples of such equipment VA could provide to veterans include tablets and smart phones, as well as associated technological equipment, applications, and/or software, that can assist a veteran in maintaining daily scheduling of important tasks or navigating their surroundings (e.g., global positioning system or GPS).

    “Communication device” would be defined as an item that compensates for a communication deficiency and allows participation in daily communication activities. Examples of such equipment VA could provide to veterans include augmentation and alternative communication devices such as picture or symbol communication boards, or an electro larynx.

    “Durable” would be defined to mean capable of, and intended for, repeat use. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of the term “durable.”

    “Home exercise equipment” would be defined as an item used in a home or residential setting that compensates for a loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and is necessary for the veteran to actively and regularly participate in aerobic, fitness, strength, or flexibility activities to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals. As with the definition of “adaptive recreation equipment,” the additional criteria in the definition that items are necessary for active and regular participation in an activity to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals, which would be documented in the veteran's medical record, ensures that items are only provided when their regular use is specifically tied to a medical goal, and not provided merely to support a veteran's participation in an activity only for personal enjoyment. This criterion would also ensure that this equipment is only provided when there is no other means for the veteran to exercise to achieve the rehabilitation goal. Such “home exercise equipment” would only be provided for one location, the veteran's primary residence, which is defined in this rulemaking (as discussed below) under proposed § 17.3210 as “the personal domicile or residential setting in which the veteran resides the majority of the year,” and this additional criterion would be stated in proposed § 17.3230 as discussed later in this rulemaking. In identifying the veteran's primary residence, we would typically rely upon the veteran's record with VA, as well as the veteran's declared residence. The additional criterion that such equipment would only be provided for one location, the primary residence, is current VA practice, and VA has authority to determine that it is reasonable pursuant to 38 U.S.C. 1701(6)(F)(iii). In this case, VA has determined this criterion to be reasonable because it may not be cost effective to provide multiple sets of the same equipment for multiple locations. Because we will provide one set of equipment, we believe it is adequate to provide this equipment where it is used the most routinely and regularly, i.e., the veteran's primary residence. While we generally would provide home exercise equipment to the veteran's primary residence, there may be instances when it may be provided to a veteran's non-primary residence. For example, if a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation plan requires access to home exercise equipment and the veteran has access to a gym near his or her primary residence, but has another residence in a rural area in which the veteran does not have access to a gym, the equipment may be provided to the veteran at his or her non-primary residence based on a clinical determination that providing such equipment at the veteran's non-primary residence would be necessary as a direct and active component of the veteran's medical treatment and rehabilitation. We further would state that prior to any installation of “home exercise equipment”, the owner of the residence would agree to the installation. We also note that to the extent the equipment is portable, an individual would be free to move it to another location where the veteran may temporarily reside, such as another residence during an extended seasonal stay. Examples of such equipment VA could provide to veterans include an upper body ergometer and a functional electrical stimulation cycle.

    “Home medical equipment” would be defined as movable and durable medical devices used in a home or residential setting to treat or support treatment of specific medical conditions and would include hospital beds, portable patient lifts (such as porch lifts or stair glides), portable ramps, ventilators, home dialysis equipment, and infusion, feeding, or wound therapy pumps. This definition is intended to encompass those medical devices typically found in a medical facility setting (e.g., hospital beds and infusion pumps), but that must be used in a home or residential setting for specific medical treatment (most typically, for continuation of treatment initially received in a medical facility setting). The definition of “home medical equipment” would specifically exclude household furniture or furnishings, improvements or structural alterations, or any household appliances for the same reasons as stated in the definition of “adaptive household item,” because such items could not reasonably be considered to be medical devices. For instance, a hospital bed could be provided as “home medical equipment,” whereas a common bed frame and mattress could not. As proposed in § 17.3230 (later in this rulemaking) “home medical equipment” would only be provided for one residential setting, the veteran's primary residence, for the same reasons as stated for “home exercise equipment” above. In the instance that at-home installation or delivery is required and the veteran has more than one residence, the Department will deliver the equipment to the veteran's primary residence. We note that to the extent the equipment is portable, an individual would be free to move it to another location where the veteran may temporarily reside, such as another residence during an extended seasonal stay. We will provide such equipment at the veteran's primary residence, as the veteran is usually also receiving professional care or assistance from a caregiver who must be at the residence at specific times, and which would involve use of the provided “home medical equipment.” While we generally would provide “home medical equipment” to the veteran's primary residence, there may be instances when it may be provided to a veteran's non-primary residence, as is similar to the provision of “home exercise equipment.” For example, a veteran may be authorized for a stair glider; however, his or her primary residence may be a single floor residence. The veteran may have another residence that has more than one floor, and it may be clinically determined that the provision of the stair glider at the non-primary residence is necessary as an active and direct component of the veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation. We also would clarify that prior to any installation of “home medical equipment”, the owner of the residence must agree to the installation of the equipment. We further would clarify that the definition of “home medical equipment” would exclude any requirement that VA will furnish such items in such a manner as to relieve any other person or entity of a contractual obligation to furnish these items or services to the veteran. This is because such items would not be needed as they have otherwise been provided for. For example, a veteran may have contracted with a residence or residential setting to furnish home medical equipment to the veteran.

    The definition of “home medical equipment” would also exclude “medical alert devices,” which, as discussed later in this proposed rule, we would define as devices designed to summon general safety assistance for a veteran, e.g. a device worn by an individual to summon medical assistance in the event of a fall or other incident, or to provide a veteran's general medical information to others, e.g., medical identification bracelets. While we currently provide both medical alert devices and medical identification bracelets, those would not be provided under these proposed rules as these items would not be an active and direct component of a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation pursuant to proposed § 17.3230, described later in this rulemaking. Medical alert devices are passive and purely communicative devices, similar to cell phones, which are not used for specific medical treatment or rehabilitation and do not contribute directly to a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation and would therefore not be provided under this authority. Their purpose is to communicate about an unforeseeable future event, and they do not actively communicate clinical or medical information about a veteran nor do they communicate information that contributes directly to a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation pursuant to proposed § 17.3230, described later in this rulemaking. Although these may be used during an unforeseeable emergency to convey information about a veteran, they do not actively or directly medically treat or rehabilitate a veteran and any limitations the veteran may have, and thus are not “necessary” under this authority. Medical alert devices are also programmable to alert whomever the veteran chooses, and do not necessarily result in an alert or communication to a medical professional. These devices also do not necessarily result in an alert that the veteran is in need of medical assistance, as these devices can be used to alert an individual or entity of a general need for assistance. With the prevalence of, and access to, cell phones and other similar technologies that serve a similar function as medical alert devices in this context, we believe that most, if not all, veterans have access to the technology necessary to alert individuals and/or entities when medical assistance is needed. Thus, while these devices could be considered beneficial to a veteran's treatment in limited circumstances, we do not consider the provision of these under this authority as reasonable. The definition of “medical alert devices” would not apply to alarms or other safety indicators on home medical equipment, such as an alarm to alert an individual if a ventilator is unplugged. Such alarms and indicators, therefore, could be provided as part of home medical equipment. These alarms and indicators that are part of medical equipment (such as a ventilator) do contribute directly to a veteran's treatment as part of the total function of the piece of medical equipment, unlike devices that serve a purely communicative function.

    Similarly, medical identification bracelets would be excluded under this regulation as they are not a direct and active component of a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation, and therefore are not reasonable and necessary under this authority. Medical identification bracelets are entirely passive, do not actively communicate any information about a veteran, and merely provide information about the existence of a condition of a veteran. Although these may be used during an unforeseeable emergency to convey information about a veteran, they do not actively or directly medically treat or rehabilitate a veteran and any limitations the veteran may have, and thus are not “necessary” under this authority. While these devices could be considered beneficial to a veteran's treatment in limited circumstances, we do not consider the provision of these under this authority as reasonable for the same reasons stated above. We note that we currently provide these medical identification bracelets, however for the reasons discussed, they would be outside the scope of this authority and would not be authorized to be provided pursuant to these proposed regulations. We further note that after the publication of the final rulemaking, we would rescind VHA Directive 2009-007, Provision of Medical Identification (ID) Bracelets and Pendants, to ensure VA policy is consistent with the published final rules.

    Lastly, we clarify that although certain home medical equipment might need to be installed in a home to ensure its proper functioning, such as a portable ramp or a hospital bed, such equipment must not amount to an improvement or structural alteration to a veteran's residence. Such improvements or alterations to homes are authorized by section 1717(a)(2) and 38 CFR 17.3100 et seq., and are not within the scope of these proposed regulations, as stated in the table in proposed § 17.3200(b). This clarification related to installation would be established in proposed § 17.3230 as discussed later in this rulemaking.

    “Home respiratory equipment” would be defined as an item used to provide oxygen therapy or to support or enhance respiratory function. We note that home respiratory equipment would be distinguished from home medical equipment because we would permit the provision of additional pieces of respiratory equipment as medically necessary outside of a single home or residential setting, such as additional portable oxygen tanks when a veteran might need to travel. Examples of such equipment VA would provide to veterans include compressed oxygen, oxygen concentrators, and continuous positive airway pressure machines.

    “Household appliances” would be defined as equipment for use in the home for performance of domestic chores or other domestic tasks, including but not limited to a refrigerator, stove, washing machine, and vacuum cleaner. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term.

    “Household furniture or furnishing” would be defined as an item commonly used to make a home habitable or otherwise used to ornament a home, including but not limited to tables, chairs, desks, lamps, cabinets, non-hospital beds, curtains, and carpet(s). We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term.

    “Implant” would be defined as any biological or non-biological material that is manufactured or processed to be placed into a surgically or naturally formed cavity on the human body; is covered with tissue, has the potential to be covered with tissue, or is permanently embedded in tissue; does not dissolve or dissipate within the body; and is not a living organ, embryonic tissue, blood, or blood product. VA provides implants as part of the prosthetics program, and this definition characterizes such implants consistently with VA's current provision of implants, and to that extent would not reflect a change in the scope of benefits available to eligible veterans.

    “Improvements or structural alterations” means a modification to a home or to an existing feature or fixture of a home, including repairs to or replacement of previously improved or altered features or fixtures. This term would be defined the same as it is defined in 38 CFR 17.3101 (i.e., a modification to a home or to an existing feature or fixture of a home, including repairs to or replacement of previously improved or altered features or fixtures). Such improvements or structural alterations are authorized by section 1717(a)(2) and 38 CFR 17.3100 et seq., and are not within the scope of these proposed regulations, as stated in the table in proposed § 17.3200(b).

    “Medical alert device” would mean an item designed to summon general safety assistance for a veteran, or that provides a veteran's general medical information to others. This definition would not include alarms or other safety indicators for home medical equipment. As previously discussed, this definition is necessary because “medical alert device” would be excluded from the term “home medical equipment.”

    “Mobility aid” would be defined as an item that compensates for a mobility impairment and that is used to maintain or improve a veteran's functional capabilities to be mobile. Examples of such equipment VA would provide to veterans include manual and motorized wheelchairs, canes, walkers, and equipment to assist veterans with reaching for or grasping items. We would exclude a service or guide dog from this definition because the provision of certain benefits for service or guide dogs is not within the scope of these proposed regulations as stated in the table in proposed § 17.3200(b). VA has published regulations concerning benefits for service and guide dogs at 38 CFR 17.148.

    “Orthotic device” would be defined as an item fitted externally to the body that is used to support, align, prevent, or correct deformities or to improve the function of movable parts of the body. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term as well as its common meaning and use in the health care industry. Examples of such items VA would provide to veterans include leg braces, upper extremity splints and braces, and functional electrical stimulation devices such as Bioness® or WalkAide®.

    “Primary residence” would be defined as the personal domicile or residential setting in which the veteran resides the majority of the year. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term. While a person may maintain more than one residence, they may only have one primary residence at a time. This would include any residential setting the veteran owns, rents, or in which the veteran otherwise resides.

    “Prosthetic device” would be defined as an item that replaces a missing or defective body part. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term as well as its common meaning and use in the health care industry. Examples of such items VA would provide to veterans include artificial limbs and artificial eyes. We note that certain prosthetic devices may not have mechanical or other functionality, but nonetheless could be considered medically necessary and not merely cosmetic in nature. For instance, certain artificial hands may not have mechanical functions to grasp objects, but the use of such devices equalizes weight distribution in the arm and across the body. As another example, artificial eyes would not function to restore or improve sight, but would provide necessary shape to an eye socket and prevent objects from entering the eye socket.

    “Replacement item” would be defined as an item that is similar or identical to an item provided under proposed § 17.3230(a), and that takes the place of such an item. We believe this definition captures the common meaning and understanding of this term.

    “VA-authorized vendor” would be defined as a vendor that has been authorized by VA to provide items and services under § 17.3230. We believe this definition is self-explanatory. This definition would be relevant to the discussion later in this proposed rule regarding the furnishing of items and services in proposed § 17.3240.

    17.38. Medical Benefits Package and 17.3220. Eligibility

    Proposed § 17.3220 would clarify veteran eligibility for prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services provided under sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a). As explained previously in this rulemaking, VA is authorized under sections 1701(6)(F)(iii) and 1710(a) to provide those prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services that VA determines are medically necessary to assist a veteran to compensate for loss of mobility or loss of other functional abilities, where the veteran is otherwise receiving care or services under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C. Section 17.38(a)(1)(viii), in turn includes the provision of “durable medical equipment and prosthetic and orthotic devices” as part of VA's “medical benefits package.” We would first revise § 17.38(a)(1)(viii) to use the term “prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services” as proposed in these regulations, and would cross reference this term with citations to the proposed regulations in this rulemaking so it is clear that such items and services under § 17.38(a)(1)(viii) are provided in accordance with proposed §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250.

    We would also revise § 17.38(b) to reflect that prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services authorized in § 17.38(a)(1)(viii) are excluded from the “promote, preserve, or restore” standard under § 17.38(b). As previously discussed in this rulemaking, the standard of “promote, preserve, or restore” under § 17.38(b) is not specific enough to distinguish when prosthetic and rehabilitative items should be provided because they are medically necessary, versus when an item or service would not be provided because it is only desired. Using a standard other than that of “promote, preserve, or restore” would also be consistent with the authorizing statutes, sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a), requiring that VA provide those items and services that are necessary and reasonable. However, in a note to proposed § 17.3230, we would state that the exclusions in § 17.38(c) apply to the provision of items and services pursuant to § 17.3230.

    Proposed § 17.3220 would then establish eligibility for prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services by requiring that veterans be enrolled in VA's enrollment system under § 17.36 or exempt from such enrollment under § 17.37, and requiring that such veterans are otherwise receiving care under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C. These two eligibility criteria would be in proposed § 17.3220(a)-(b), respectively. Proposed § 17.3220(b) would further describe the concept of “otherwise receiving care” to include where a veteran is prescribed a prosthetic or rehabilitative item or service by a VA provider or an authorized non-Department provider. We believe that by receiving a prescription the veteran would be receiving care under chapter 17.

    17.3230. Authorized Items and Services

    Proposed § 17.3230(a) would state that VA would provide veterans who are eligible under § 17.3220 with items and services that would be listed in proposed § 17.3230(a)(1)-(15) as described below. Proposed § 17.3230(a) would further state that VA will provide items and services listed in proposed § 17.3230(a)(1)-(15), if VA determines that the items or services serve as a direct and active component of the veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation, and do not merely support the comfort or convenience of the veteran. The statement in proposed § 17.3230(a) that items and services need to be a direct and active component of the veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation and not merely for the comfort or convenience of the veteran is consistent with VA practice. As stated previously in this rulemaking, the more specific criteria related to medical necessity in proposed § 17.3230(a) are needed because the “promote, preserve, or restore” criteria in § 17.38(b) may be appropriate in terms of medical services generally, but are not specific enough to distinguish when prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services should be provided because they are medically necessary, versus when an item or service would not be provided because it is only desired. The items and services provided are intended to be limited to those that accommodate a veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation. This would also be consistent with the authorizing statutes, sections 1701(6)(F) and 1710(a), requiring that VA provide those items and services that are necessary and reasonable. Proposed § 17.3230(a)(1) through (a)(15) would list the categories of items and services that have been and would continue to be provided by VA as prosthetic or rehabilitative items or services. Definitions of the items and services to be provided in proposed § 17.3230(a)(1) through (a)(15), as well as examples of such items, are provided in the discussion of proposed § 17.3210, and we do not reiterate that information generally below. We propose, however, additional criteria that must be met in proposed § 17.3230(a)(5) and (a)(6) for “home exercise equipment” and “home medical equipment,” respectively. We reiterate from the discussion of the proposed definitions earlier in this rulemaking that proposed § 17.3230(a)(5) and (a)(6) would establish a restriction that both “home exercise equipment” and “home medical equipment” would only be provided for one location, generally the veteran's primary residence. This additional criterion that such equipment would only be provided for one location is current VA practice and is reasonable because we believe it is adequate in most cases to provide this equipment at the veteran's primary residence, a term which is previously defined and discussed in this rulemaking. Relatedly, it is current VA practice to provide one piece of equipment; therefore, we believe it is also reasonable to provide that equipment to the veteran's primary residence, as that is the personal domicile or residential setting in which the veteran resides the majority of the year, and is where we believe the equipment will likely be used most routinely and regularly. If the veteran has more than one residence, the Department will provide the equipment to the veteran's primary residence. We note that to the extent the equipment is portable, an individual would be free to move it to another location where the veteran may temporarily reside, such as another residence during an extended seasonal stay. As indicated previously, there may be limited instances when “home exercise equipment” or “home medical equipment” may be provided at a non-primary residence based on a clinical determination. Prior to any installation of such equipment in the residence, the owner of the residence would have to agree to the installation of the equipment. Additionally, proposed § 17.3230(a)(6) would establish that home medical equipment must not require installation that amounts to a home improvement or structural alteration to a veteran's primary residence. Such improvements and alterations to homes are authorized by 38 U.S.C. 1717(a)(2) and controlled by other implementing regulations, as referenced in the table in proposed § 17.3200(b). Lastly, we would require an additional restriction in proposed § 17.3230(a)(2) and (a)(5) that “adaptive recreation equipment” and “home exercise equipment” be provided when such equipment would achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals as documented in the veteran's medical record. This is because these types of equipment are generally provided to achieve specific rehabilitation goals, while the other items and services provided under this section are not.

    Proposed § 17.3230(a)(12) would authorize the repair of any item provided under proposed § 17.3230(a), unless cost or clinical reasons favor replacing the item. Even if not initially prescribed by VA, an item under proposed § 17.3230(a) could be repaired if the VA provider or authorized non-Department provider determines that the item is still medically necessary and writes an authorized prescription for the veteran. This is consistent with current VA practice, and is reasonable to ensure that veterans have necessary and properly functioning items.

    Proposed § 17.3230(a)(13) would authorize the replacement of items provided under proposed § 17.3230 if the original items have been damaged, destroyed, lost, or stolen, or if replacement is clinically indicated. Proposed paragraph (a)(13) would establish that if items are serviceable and still meet the veteran's need, VA will not replace such items for the sole purpose of obtaining a newer model of the same or similar item. Proposed § 17.3230(a)(13) sets forth a reasonable restriction that would allow VA to provide replacement items as clinically indicated, for the benefit of all veterans to whom VA must provide these items and services.

    We note that generally we would provide veterans with one item or service under this proposed rule. However, there may be instances when we would provide a veteran with a spare item. The provision of spare items would be authorized if it is clinically determined that a veteran would immediately require another identical or similar item. For example, the provision of a spare item may be clinically determined to be immediately required if an item provided under the proposed regulations were to fail or require rotation (e.g., routine cleaning) as a component of proper use. VA may also provide an identical or similar item in the event of a failure of an item provided under these regulations if it is determined that it would otherwise be detrimental to the veteran's medical treatment or rehabilitation to not provide a spare item. This is current VA practice and is reasonable to ensure that veterans would have access to items that are necessary on a continuous basis if the veteran could not wait for repair or replacement, such as a spare wheelchair or spare prosthetic limb. VA's provision of items as explained above attempts to ensure that veterans have working, usable equipment when needed. We discuss the provision of spare items in a note at the end of proposed § 17.3230.

    Additionally, VA's reimbursement of emergency care under 38 U.S.C. 1725 and 1728 ensures that VA may reimburse some veterans for needed repairs to equipment if such repairs cannot wait for prior VA authorization. For these reasons, and to be consistent with section 1728, we propose removing § 17.122, which authorizes the repair of prosthetic and similar items without prior authorization from VA if the expenses were incurred in the care of an adjudicated service-connected disability. Section 17.122 is not needed, as sections 1725 and 1728 would provide for VA payment of repairs without prior VA authorization as described above, and the other VA regulations that currently implement these sections (sections 17.120 et seq. and 17.1000 et seq.) are sufficient to authorize payment. Further, we find no basis for treating reimbursement of the expenses of prosthetic repairs differently from the expenses of other types of “emergency care”. In addition to removing § 17.122, we propose deleting from § 17.120 the following language, “(except prosthetic appliances, similar devices, and repairs),” because we do not see a need to treat the provision of these appliances, devices and repairs any differently from other emergency care provided under this section. Removing § 17.122 is needed as described above, and would clarify that the access to prosthetic repair services without prior authorization in medical emergencies for veterans would be authorized under sections 1725 and 1728 and their implementing regulations.

    Proposed § 17.3230(a)(14) would authorize the provision of specialized clothing made necessary by the wearing of a prosthetic device. The provision of specialized clothing made necessary by the wearing of a prosthetic device is specifically identified as a medical service under section 1701(6)(F)(ii), and we would therefore include it in this proposed rule. We contrast this with the clothing allowance provided under § 3.810 and authorized by 38 U.S.C. 1162, which is intended to provide a clothing allowance only to veterans with certain service-connected disabilities, apart from the provision of medical services under section 1710. See 118 Cong. Rec. S. 20748, 20751 (1972) (legislative history related to the bill that would enact section 1162, explaining that a new clothing allowance would assist veterans to purchase non-specialized, regular clothing that may experience wear and tear due to use of a wheelchair or prosthetic device, separate from the benefit for specialized clothing due to the wearing of a prosthetic device that VA provided as a medical service).

    Proposed § 17.3230(a)(15) would authorize training with and fitting of items as considered necessary. Training and fitting of prosthetic appliances is required by 38 U.S.C. 1714(a), is current VA practice, and is reasonable to ensure, to the extent practicable, that veterans safely operate items and that items are properly maintained to promote their longevity. We would additionally remove current § 17.153 related to training and fitting of prosthetic and similar items, as it would be duplicative of proposed § 17.3230(a)(15).

    Proposed § 17.3230(b) would establish that unless items provided under proposed § 17.3230(a) are loaned to a veteran, based on a clinical determination, such items become the property of the veteran once the veteran takes possession of those items. This would ensure that veterans have full use of, and responsibility for, items provided by VA, and will use them in the manner in which they are prescribed. If items will be loaned, a written agreement (which would include roles and responsibilities for the duration of the loan) with the veteran would be entered into to ensure that it is clear the veteran does not own the item, and that the veteran fully understands and agrees to the terms of the loan.

    17.3240. Furnishing Authorized Items and Services

    Proposed § 17.3240(a) would establish that VA will determine whether VA or a VA-authorized vendor will furnish authorized items and services under § 17.3230 to eligible veterans. When VA has the capacity or inventory, VA directly provides items and services to veterans. However, VA also may use, on a case-by case basis, VA-authorized vendors to provide greater access, lower cost, and/or a wider range of items and services. We would clarify in regulation that this administrative business decision is made solely by VA to eliminate any possible confusion as to whether a veteran has a right to request items or services generally, or to request specific items or services from a provider other than VA, and to clarify for the benefit of VA-authorized vendors that VA retains this discretion as part of our duty to administer this program in a legally sufficient, fiscally responsible manner.

    Proposed § 17.3240(b) would establish that, except for emergency treatment reimbursable under 38 CFR 17.120 et. seq or 17.1000 et seq., prior authorization is required from VA for VA-authorized vendors to obtain reimbursement for furnishing items or services under § 17.3230 to veterans. Prior authorization may be obtained by contacting VA. Paragraph (b) will help ensure that the highest quality and most clinically appropriate device is provided, as prescribed by VA providers, and that items or services are not subject to potential alterations or substitutions by VA-authorized vendors without VA oversight.

    17.3250. Veteran Responsibilities

    Proposed § 17.3250 would establish responsibilities of veterans who are provided prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services. Proposed § 17.3250(a) would establish that veterans must use items provided under proposed § 17.3230(a) in the manner for which they are prescribed, and consistent with the manufacturer's instructions and any training provided. This would ensure, to the extent practicable, veteran safety in using the item as well as the longevity of the item.

    Proposed § 17.3250(b) would establish that, except for emergency care under 38 CFR 17.120 et. seq. or 38 CFR 17.1000 et seq., veterans must obtain prior authorization from VA if they want VA to reimburse a VA-authorized vendor for such items and services provided under § 17.3230. This would reinforce general VA oversight requirements already proposed in these regulations to ensure the highest quality and most appropriate item or service is provided, and would distinctly provide notice to veterans and vendors that VA will not be responsible for the cost of items and services provided to veterans who are not preauthorized by VA or otherwise covered as emergency care.

    Rescission of Use of Prosthetic Service Card and Related VA Policy

    We note that after the publication of this rulemaking is final, we would rescind, in their entirety, VHA Handbooks 1173.06, 1173.1. 1173.10, 1173.2, 1173.3, VA Forms 10-2501 and 10-2520, and VA Form Letter 10-55; and develop new VHA policy to ensure VA's provision of prosthetics is consistent with the published final rules. Any references to the prosthetic service card would be excluded from future VHA policies and forms implementing these rules as further explained below.

    As part of this plan, we specifically note that future VA policy would not include portions of existing VA policy that reference “prosthetic service cards” and establish limits on reimbursement or payment amounts for emergency repairs of prosthetic items through the use of a “prosthetic service card” to obtain repairs from VA-authorized vendors without prior authorization from VA. A “prosthetic service card” is a piece of paper (VA Form 10-2501) that VA has issued to veterans in the past for the purpose of providing a third party vendor with notice that VA would reimburse such vendor for the provision of certain repairs, up to certain amounts. VA Form 2520 in the past has been the invoice used by vendors to submit to VA requests for payment for repairs performed under the prosthetic service card. This prosthetic service card was intended to allow third party vendors to forego the normal process of contacting VA first for authorization, and instead submit an invoice to VA for the cost of repairs after they were completed. The card was intended to be used if it was not feasible for a VA-authorized vendor to contact VA for authorization and the repair was immediately necessary, such as when a repair was needed after VA office hours. However, these prosthetic service cards have not been widely or consistently used by veterans or vendors for the purpose of obtaining VA approval of emergency repairs. First, veterans in many instances have lost their prosthetic service cards or have not carried the card on their person to be able to present to third party vendors. Second, even when presented with the card, many third party vendors have nonetheless contacted VA for authorization prior to providing repairs. The card itself is merely a piece of paper that provides notice that VA will reimburse a vendor for certain repairs up to certain amounts—it is not a pre-paid credit card or other means of providing immediate payment to a VA-authorized vendor (despite the description of the card as a “debit” card in VHA Handbook 1173.1). Even when the card has been used, third party vendors have still had to submit an invoice and other documentation to VA to get reimbursed for the repair. Therefore, use of the prosthetic service card has not typically been any less burdensome for third party vendors to receive payment from VA than if such vendors had contacted VA for authorization prior to the repair. The intent of the card was to decrease the burden for both veterans and third party vendors, but it has not functioned consistently in this manner. Additionally, the card does not appropriately reference sections 1725 and 1728 as the authorities to provide repairs without prior authorization, which creates problems where the card either does not recognize the applicable criteria in sections 1725 and 1728 (for instance, related to eligibility under sections 1725 and 1728), or establishes criteria that may be inconsistent with 1725 and 1728 (for instance, the prosthetic service card contains a space for VA to set a limit on any repair costs).

    Currently, references to the prosthetic service card (PSC) are located in paragraphs 3.tt, 8.a, 9.i, 9.h, 9.m of VHA Handbook 1173.1; paragraphs 4.a.(2)-a.(7), 4.b., 4.c.(1)-c.(7), and 6.c.(4) of VHA Handbook 1173.2; paragraphs 10.a.(1) and 10.c of VHA Handbook 1173.3; paragraphs 7.a. and 7.e. of VHA Handbook 1173.06; and paragraphs 3.i.(9) and 4.c. in VHA Handbook 1173.10. Paragraphs 3.tt and 9.h in VHA Handbook 1173.1 both define “VA Form 10-2501, Prosthetic Service Card (PSC).” Paragraph 8.a. in VHA Handbook 1173.1 references requests for payment of PSC (i.e. prosthetic service card) repairs. Paragraph 9.i in VHA Handbook 1173.1 defines “VA Form 10-2520, Prosthetic Service Card Invoice”, and paragraph 9.m. defines “VA Form Letter 10-55, Authority to Exceed Repair Costs of Prosthetic Appliances” as a letter of authorization forwarded to a provider of PSC (i.e. prosthetic service card) repairs when the cost of that repair exceeds the limit authorized by the PSC (i.e. prosthetic service card). In VHA Handbook 1173.2, paragraph 4.a.(2) requires that repairs be obtained by use of the prosthetic service card; paragraphs 4.a.(3)-a.(7) detail requirements that PSCs be provided by all prosthetic programs at field facilities, authority for equipment repairs and services using prosthetic service cards, monetary limits for prosthetic service cards, responsibility for payment of prosthetic service card invoices, and payment for repairs made without prior approval; paragraph 4.b. sets forth VA, vendor, and veteran responsibilities related to the administration of prosthetic service cards; paragraphs 4.c.(1)-c.(7) include prosthetic service card benefits limits, and the processes for prosthetic service card preparation and issuance, prosthetic service card invoice preparation and issues, repairs authorization, and prosthetic service card revocation or cancellation; and paragraph 6.c.(4) requires repairs of artificial limbs, braces, wheelchairs, and other appliances on presentation by the veteran of a valid prosthetic service card.

    Paragraph 10.a.(1) of VHA Handbook 1173.3 states that repairs may be obtained through commercial sources using VA Form 10-2501, and paragraph 10.c. of VHA Handbook 1173.3 encourages the use of prosthetic service cards for those veterans eligible for a prosthetic service card.

    Paragraphs 7.a. and 7.e. of VHA Handbook 1173.06 authorize the use of prosthetic service cards for repairs to wheelchairs. Paragraphs 3.i.(9) and 4.c. in VHA Handbook 1173.10 authorize the use of prosthetic service cards for repairs to orthotic devices.

    Lastly, VA Form 10-2501, VA Form 10-2520, and VA Form Letter 10-55 also reference prosthetic service cards. Currently, VA Form 10-2520 is an approved information collection under OMB Control Number 2900-0188, which is set to expire on October 31, 2017. On August 22, 2017, we issued a Federal Register (FR) Notice informing the public of the opportunity to comment on the proposed renewal of that information collection. 82 FR 39951. While we are requesting renewal of that collection, we now propose to eliminate VA Form 10-2520 under that existing collection for the reasons explained above as part of this proposed rule. Public comments on the discontinuance of VA Form 10-2520 should be submitted as part of this rulemaking for consideration by VA. While related, VA Form 10-2015 and VA Form Letter 10-55 are not information collections, did not require OMB approval prior to issuance, and thus are not part of that Federal Register Notice.

    As previously stated, to ensure consistency with the published final regulations, we would rescind all relevant and applicable handbooks, and develop a new VHA policy document or documents. Any references to prosthetic service cards in existing policies would be excluded from that future policy document or documents for the reasons mentioned above. We would also discontinue the use of the related forms and letters previously identified in this section. As part of this rulemaking, we welcome any public comments on these efforts as they relate to this rulemaking.

    Although we would rescind the prosthetic service card and the policies and forms governing its use, there would remain, as explained previously, statutory and regulatory authority (38 U.S.C. 1725 and 1728, 38 CFR 17.120 et seq. and 17.1000 et seq.) to reimburse some vendors or veterans for the cost of some emergency, unauthorized repairs. VA could also obviate the need for veterans to obtain emergency repairs from vendors by providing spares for prosthetic and rehabilitative items under § 17.3230, as clinically appropriate.

    Effect of Rulemaking

    The Code of Federal Regulations, as proposed to be revised by this proposed rulemaking, would represent the exclusive legal authority on this subject. No contrary guidance or procedures would be authorized. All VA guidance would be read to conform with this proposed rulemaking if possible or, if not possible, such guidance would be superseded by this rulemaking.

    Paperwork Reduction Act

    This proposed rule contains no provisions constituting a collection of information under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3521).

    Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Secretary hereby certifies that this proposed rule would not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities as they are defined in the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601-612. Therefore, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), these amendments would be exempt from the initial and final regulatory flexibility analysis requirements of 5 U.S.C. 603 and 604.

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess the costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, when regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, and other advantages; distributive impacts; and equity). Executive Order 13563 (Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review) emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, reducing costs, harmonizing rules, and promoting flexibility. Executive Order 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review) defines a “significant regulatory action,” requiring review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) as “any regulatory action that is likely to result in a rule that may: (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities; (2) Create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency; (3) Materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or (4) Raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in this Executive Order.”

    The economic, interagency, budgetary, legal, and policy implications of this regulatory action have been examined, and it has been determined not to be a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866. VA's impact analysis can be found as a supporting document at http://www.regulations.gov, usually within 48 hours after the rulemaking document is published. Additionally, a copy of the rulemaking and its impact analysis are available on VA's Web site at http://www1.va.gov/orpm/, by following the link for “VA Regulations Published.”

    Unfunded Mandates

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 requires, at 2 U.S.C. 1532, that agencies prepare an assessment of anticipated costs and benefits before issuing any rule that may result in the expenditure by State, local, and tribal governments, in the aggregate, or by the private sector, of $100 million or more (adjusted annually for inflation) in any one year. This proposed rule would have no such effect on State, local, and tribal governments, or on the private sector.

    Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance

    The Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance numbers and titles for the programs affected by this document are 64.009, Veterans Medical Care Benefits; 64.013, Veterans Prosthetic Appliances.

    Signing Authority

    The Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or designee, approved this document and authorized the undersigned to sign and submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register for publication electronically as an official document of the Department of Veterans Affairs. Gina S. Farrisee, Deputy Chief of Staff, approved this document on October 11, 2017, for publication.

    List of Subjects in 38 CFR Part 17

    Administrative practice and procedure, Government contracts, Health care, Health facilities, Health professions, Medical devices, Veterans.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Janet Coleman, Chief, Office of Regulation Policy & Management, Office of the Secretary, Department of Veterans Affairs.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, we propose to amend 38 CFR part 17 as follows:

    PART 17—MEDICAL 1. The authority citation for part 17 continues to read as follows: Authority:

    38 U.S.C. 501, and as noted in specific sections.

    2. Amend § 17.38 by revising paragraph (a)(1)(viii) and revising paragraph (b). The revisions read as follows:
    § 17.38. Medical Benefits Package.

    (a) * * *

    (1) * * *

    (viii) Prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services as authorized under §§ 17.3200-.3250, and eyeglasses and hearing aids as authorized under § 17.149.

    (b) Provision of the “medical benefits package”. Care referred to in the “medical benefits package” (except for prosthetics and rehabilitative items and services authorized in paragraph (a)(1)(viii) of this section) will be provided to individuals only if it is determined by appropriate healthcare professionals that the care is needed to promote, preserve, or restore the health of the individual and is in accord with generally accepted standards of medical practice.

    § 17.120 [Amended].
    3. Amend the introductory text of § 17.120 by removing “(except prosthetic appliances, similar devices, and repairs)”.
    § 17.122 [Removed].
    4. Remove § 17.122. 5. Revise the undesignated center heading that precedes § 17.148 to read as follows: Sensory and Other Rehabilitative Aids
    §§ 17.150 [Removed and reserved]
    §§ 17.153 [Removed and reserved]
    6. Remove and reserve §§ 17.150 and 17.153. 7. Add an undesignated center heading and §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250, to read as follows: Prosthetic and Rehabilitative Items And Services
    § 17.3200 Purpose and scope.

    (a) Purpose. The purpose of §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250 is to establish eligibility and other criteria for the provision to veterans of the prosthetic and rehabilitative items and services, listed in § 17.3230, authorized as medical services under 38 U.S.C. 1701(6)(F) and 38 U.S.C. 1710(a).

    (b) Scope. Sections 17.3200 through 17.3250 apply only to items and services listed in § 17.3230(a) and authorized as medical services under 38 U.S.C. 1701(6)(F) and 38 U.S.C. 1710(a). The provision of the items or services and payments in the table below are authorized in whole or in part by separate statutes and controlled by other implementing regulations:

    Item or service Statute Regulation(s) Clothing allowance 38 U.S.C. 1162 38 CFR 3.810. Service and guide dog benefits 38 U.S.C. 1714(b) & (c) 38 CFR 17.148. Sensori-neural aids 38 U.S.C. 1707(b) 38 CFR 17.149. Patient lifts and other rehabilitative devices 38 U.S.C. 1717(b) 38 CFR 17.151. Devices for deaf veterans 38 U.S.C. 1717(c) 38 CFR 17.152. Equipment for blind veterans 38 U.S.C. 1714(b) 38 CFR 17.154. Automobile adaptive equipment 38 U.S.C. 3901 et seq. 38 CFR 17.155 et seq. Home improvements and structural alterations 38 U.S.C. 1717(a)(2) 38 CFR 17.3100 et seq. (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 1162, 1701, 1707, 1710, 1714, 1717, 3901)
    § 17.3210 Definitions.

    For the purposes of §§ 17.3200 through 17.3250:

    Activities of daily living (ADLs) means specific personal care activities that are required for basic daily maintenance and sustenance, to include eating, toileting, bathing, grooming, dressing and undressing, and mobility.

    Adaptive household item means a durable household item that has been adapted to compensate for, or that by design compensates for, loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and is necessary to complete one or more ADLs in the home or other residential setting. Adaptive household items include but are not limited to adaptive eating utensils, shower stools or chairs, hooks to assist in buttoning clothing, or shoe horns. This definition does not include household furniture or furnishings, improvements or structural alterations, or household appliances, unless a household appliance is necessary to complete an ADL in the home or other residential setting. VA will not furnish such items or services in such a manner as to relieve any other person or entity of a contractual obligation to furnish these items or services to the veteran.

    Adaptive recreation equipment means an item that is designed to compensate for, or that by design compensates for, loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and is necessary for the veteran to actively and regularly participate in a sport, recreation, or leisure activity to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals as documented in the veteran's medical record.

    Cognitive device means an item that compensates for a cognitive impairment and that is used to maintain or improve a veteran's functional capabilities, including but not limited to technological equipment such as tablets and smart phones, and associated technological equipment, applications or software that can assist a veteran in maintaining daily scheduling of important tasks or navigating their surroundings (e.g., global positioning system, or GPS) .

    Communication device means an item that compensates for a communication deficiency and allows participation in daily communication activities, including but not limited to picture or symbol communication boards and an electro larynx.

    Durable means capable of, and intended for, repeat use.

    Home exercise equipment means an item used in a home or residential setting that compensates for a loss of physical, sensory, or cognitive function and that is necessary for the veteran to actively and regularly participate in aerobic, fitness, strength, or flexibility activities to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals as documented in the veteran's medical record, when there is no other means for the veteran to exercise to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals. Such equipment includes but is not limited to an upper body ergometer and a functional electrical stimulation cycle.

    Home medical equipment means an item that is a movable and durable medical device that is used in a home or residential setting to treat or support treatment of specific medical conditions. Such equipment includes but is not limited to hospital beds, portable patient lifts, portable ramps, ventilators, home dialysis equipment, and infusion, feeding, or wound therapy pumps. This definition does not include household furniture or furnishings, improvements or structural alterations, household appliances, or medical alert devices. VA will not furnish home medical equipment in such a manner as to relieve any other person or entity of a contractual obligation to furnish these items or services to the veteran.

    Home respiratory equipment means an item used to provide oxygen therapy or to support or enhance respiratory function, including but not limited to compressed oxygen, oxygen concentrators, and continuous positive airway pressure machines.

    Household appliance means an item used in the home for performance of domestic chores or other domestic tasks, including but not limited to a refrigerator, stove, washing machine, and vacuum cleaner.

    Household furniture or furnishing means an item commonly used to make a home habitable or otherwise used to ornament a home, including but not limited to tables, chairs, desks, lamps, cabinets, non-hospital beds, curtains, and carpet(s).

    Implant means any biological or non-biological material that:

    (1) Is manufactured or processed to be placed into a surgically or naturally formed cavity on the human body;

    (2) Is covered with tissue, has the potential to be covered with tissue, or is permanently embedded in tissue;

    (3) Does not dissolve or dissipate within the body; and

    (4) Is not a living organ, embryonic tissue, blood, or blood product.

    Improvements or structural alterations means a modification to a home or to an existing feature or fixture of a home, including repairs to or replacement of previously improved or altered features or fixtures.

    Medical alert device means an item designed to summon general safety assistance for a veteran, or provides a veteran's general medical information to others. This definition does not include alarms or other safety indicators for home medical equipment.

    Mobility aid means an item that compensates for a mobility impairment and that is used to maintain or improve a veteran's functional capabilities to be mobile. Mobility aids include but are not limited to manual and motorized wheelchairs, canes, walkers, and equipment to assist a veteran to reach for or grasp items This definition does not include a service or guide dog.

    Orthotic device means an item fitted externally to the body that is used to support, align, prevent, or correct deformities or to improve the function of movable parts of the body. Orthotic devices include but are not limited to leg braces, upper extremity splints and braces, and functional stimulation devices.

    Primary residence means the personal domicile or residential setting in which the veteran resides the majority of the year.

    Prosthetic device means an item that replaces a missing or defective body part. Prosthetic devices include but are not limited to artificial limbs and artificial eyes.

    Replacement item means an item that is similar or identical to an item provided under § 17.3230(a), and that takes the place of such an item.

    VA-authorized vendor means a vendor that has been authorized by VA to provide items and services under § 17.3230.

    (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 1701, 1710)
    § 17.3220 Eligibility.

    A veteran is eligible to receive items and services described in § 17.3230 if:

    (a) The veteran is enrolled under § 17.36 or exempt from enrollment under § 17.37; and

    (b) The veteran is otherwise receiving care or services under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C. If a VA provider or an authorized non-Department provider prescribes an item or service for the veteran, the veteran is considered to otherwise be receiving care or services under chapter 17 of title 38 U.S.C.

    (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 1701(6)(F), 1710)
    § 17.3230 Authorized items and services.

    (a) VA will provide veterans eligible under § 17.3220 with the following items and services, if VA determines that such items and services serve as a direct and active component of the veteran's medical treatment and rehabilitation and do not merely support the comfort or convenience of the veteran:

    (1) Adaptive household items.

    (2) Adaptive recreation equipment, when such equipment would achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals as documented in the veteran's medical record.

    (3) Cognitive devices.

    (4) Communication devices.

    (5) Home exercise equipment, where such equipment will only be provided for one location, the veteran's primary residence, unless it is clinically determined that the equipment should be provided at the veteran's non-primary residence instead of the veteran's primary residence. Prior to any installation of home exercise equipment, the owner of the residence must agree to the installation. Such equipment will only be provided to achieve the veteran's rehabilitation goals as documented in the veteran's medical record.

    (6) Home medical equipment, and if required, installation that does not amount to an improvement or structural alteration to a veteran's residence. Such equipment will only be provided for one location, the veteran's primary residence, unless it is clinically determined that the equipment should be provided at the veteran's non-primary residence instead of the veteran's primary residence. Prior to any installation of home medical equipment, the owner of the residence must agree to the installation.

    (7) Home respiratory equipment.

    (8) Implants.

    (9) Mobility aids.

    (10) Orthotic devices.

    (11) Prosthetic devices.

    (12) Repairs to items provided under paragraph (a) of this section, even if the item was not initially prescribed by VA, but VA determines the repair to be necessary, unless VA determines to replace the item for cost or clinical reasons.

    (13) Replacement items, if items provided under this section have been damaged, destroyed, lost, or stolen, or if replacement is clinically indicated, subject to the following: Items that are serviceable, and that still meet the veteran's need, will not be replaced for the sole purpose of obtaining a newer model of the same or similar item.

    (14) Specialized clothing made necessary by the wearing of a prosthetic device; and

    (15) Training with and fitting of prescribed items as considered necessary.

    (b) Unless an item provided under § 17.3230(a) is loaned to the veteran based on a clinical determination that a loan is more beneficial for the veteran, such items become the property of the veteran once the veteran takes possession of those items. If the determination is that the item will be loaned to a veteran, the veteran must agree to the terms of the loan in order to receive the item.

    Note to Section § 17.3230: Even though the items and services listed in this provision are included in the medical benefits package, this section governs determinations of need for them and not 38 CFR 17.38(b). The exclusions under 38 CFR 17.38(c) will apply to the items and services provided under this section. While VA will generally provide only one item under this section, the provision of spare items may be authorized based on a clinical determination of need using the criteria set forth in this section.

    (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 1701(6)(F), 1710, 1714(a))
    § 17.3240 Furnishing authorized items and services.

    (a) VA will determine whether VA or a VA-authorized vendor will furnish authorized items and services under § 17.3230 to veterans eligible for such items and services under § 17.3210.

    (b) Except for emergency care reimbursable under 38 CFR 17.120 et seq. or 38 CFR 17.1000 et seq., prior authorization is required for VA to reimburse VA-authorized vendors for furnishing items or services under § 17.3230 to veterans. Prior authorization must be obtained from VA by contacting any VA medical facility.

    § 17.3250. Veteran responsibilities.

    (a) Veterans must use items provided under § 17.3230 in the manner for which they are prescribed, and consistent with the manufacturer's instructions and any training provided. Failure to do so may result in the item not being replaced under § 17.3230(a)(13).

    (b) Except for emergency care under 38 CFR 17.120 et seq. or 17.1000 et seq., veterans obtaining items and services provided under § 17.3230 must obtain prior authorization from VA in order to obtain VA reimbursement for such items and services obtained from a VA-authorized vendor. VA will not be responsible for the cost of items and services provided that are not preauthorized by VA or that otherwise are not covered as emergency care under 38 CFR 17.120 et. seq. or 17.1000 et seq.

    (Authority: 38 U.S.C. 501, 1701, 1710, 1725, 1728)
    [FR Doc. 2017-22358 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 8320-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0185; FRL-9969-62-Region 5] Air Plan Approval; Ohio; Regional Haze Five-Year Progress Report State Implementation Plan AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing approval of a revision to the Ohio State Implementation Plan (SIP) submitted by the State of Ohio (Ohio) through the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (OEPA). Ohio's SIP revision addresses the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA) and EPA's rules that require states to submit periodic reports describing progress towards reasonable progress goals (RPGs) established for regional haze, and a determination of the adequacy of the state's existing implementation plan addressing regional haze (regional haze SIP). EPA is proposing approval of the Ohio SIP revision on the basis that it addresses the progress report and adequacy determination requirements for the first implementation period for regional haze.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R05-OAR-2016-0185 at http://www.regulations.gov or via email to [email protected]. For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the Web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Michelle Becker, Life Scientist, Attainment Planning and Maintenance Section, Air Programs Branch (AR-18J), Environmental Protection Agency, Region 5, 77 West Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois 60604, (312) 886-3901, [email protected].

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

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

    I. Background II. EPA's Analysis of Ohio's Regional Haze Progress Report and Adequacy Determination III. What action is EPA taking? IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews I. Background

    States are required to submit a progress report that evaluates progress towards the RPGs for each Class I Federal area 1 (Class I area) within the state and in each Class I area outside the state which may be affected by emissions from within the state. See 40 CFR 51.308(g). States are also required to submit, at the same time as the progress report, a determination of the adequacy of the state's existing regional haze SIP. See 40 CFR 51.308(h). The first progress report must be submitted in the form of a SIP revision and is due five years after the submittal of the initial regional haze SIP. On March 11, 2011, OEPA submitted its first regional haze SIP in accordance with the requirements of 40 CFR 51.308.

    1 Areas designated as mandatory Class I Federal areas consist of national parks exceeding 6000 acres, wilderness areas and national memorial parks exceeding 5000 acres, and all international parks that were in existence on August 7, 1977 (42 U.S.C. 7472(a)). Listed at 40 CFR part 81 subpart D.

    On March 11, 2016, Ohio submitted as a SIP revision a report on the progress made in the first implementation period towards the RPGs for Class I areas that are affected by emissions from the state of Ohio (progress report). This progress report included a determination that Ohio's existing regional haze SIP requires no substantive revision to achieve the established regional haze visibility improvement and emissions reduction goals for 2018. EPA is proposing to approve Ohio's progress report on the basis that it satisfies the requirements of 40 CFR 51.308.

    II. EPA's Analysis of Ohio's Regional Haze Progress Report and Adequacy Determination

    On March 11, 2016, OEPA submitted a revision to Ohio's regional haze SIP to address progress made in the first planning period towards RPGs for Class I areas that are affected by emissions from Ohio's sources. This progress report also included a determination of the adequacy of the state's existing regional haze SIP.

    Ohio has no Class I areas within its borders. Emissions from sources in Ohio contribute to the visibility impairment in the following Class I areas: Caney Creek Wilderness Area (Arkansas), Upper Buffalo Wilderness Area (Arkansas), Great Gulf Wilderness Area (New Hampshire), Presidential Range-Dry River Wilderness Area (New Hampshire), Brigantine Wilderness Area (New Jersey), Great Smoky Mountains National Park (North Carolina, Tennessee), Mammoth Cave National Park (Kentucky), Acadia National Park (Maine), Moosehorn Wilderness Area (Maine), Seney Wilderness Area (Michigan), Hercules-Glades Wilderness Area (Missouri), Mingo Wilderness Area (Missouri), Lye Brook Wilderness (Vermont), James River Face Wilderness (Virginia), Shenandoah National Park (Virginia), and Dolly Sods/Otter Creek Wilderness (West Virginia).

    In developing a long term strategy (LTS) for ensuring reasonable progress towards improving visibility, Ohio participated with other states and tribes through the Midwest Regional Planning Organization (MRPO). Additionally, Ohio consulted with the Mid-Atlantic/Northeast Visibility Union (MANE-VU), and Federal Land Managers (FLMs) as a part of developing its initial SIP. The original Ohio regional haze SIP determined that “on-the-books” controls would constitute the measures necessary to address Ohio's contribution to visibility impairment in the Class I areas to which Ohio contributes. This was supported by modeling assessments from the MRPO and in consultation with other states and Regional Planning Organizations (RPOs).

    A. Regional Haze Progress Report SIPs

    The following section includes EPA's analysis of Ohio's progress report submittal and an explanation of the basis of our proposed approval.

    1. Status of Implementation of All Measures Included in the Regional Haze SIP

    In its progress report, Ohio summarizes the status of the emissions reduction measures that were included in its 2011 regional haze SIP, specifically, the status of the on-the-books emissions reduction measures. Details of the measures and implementation for various on-highway mobile sources, off-highway mobile sources, area sources, and point sources are set forth in Section II.A of the progress report.

    In its regional haze SIP, Ohio relied on the Clean Air Interstate Rule (CAIR) to meet the sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOX) best available retrofit technology (BART) requirements for its electric generating units (EGUs) as well as to ensure reasonable progress. Ohio's progress report describes the litigation regarding CAIR and Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) that has had a substantial impact on EPA's review of the regional haze SIPs of many states.

    In 2005, EPA issued regulations allowing states to rely on CAIR to meet certain requirements of the Regional Haze Rule. See 70 FR 39104 (July 6, 2005).2 A number of states, including Ohio, submitted regional haze SIPs consistent with these regulatory provisions. CAIR, however, was remanded (without vacatur) to EPA in 2008, North Carolina v. EPA, 550 F.3d 1176, 1178 (D.C. Cir. 2008), and replaced by CSAPR. 76 FR 48208 (August 8, 2011). Implementation of CSAPR was scheduled to begin on January 1, 2012, when CSAPR would have superseded the CAIR program. However, numerous parties filed petitions for review of CSAPR, and at the end of 2011, the D.C. Circuit issued an order staying CSAPR pending resolution of the petitions and directing EPA to continue to administer CAIR. Order of December 30, 2011, in EME Homer City Generation, L.P. v. EPA, D.C. Cir. No. 11-1302.

    2 CAIR required certain states like Ohio to reduce emissions of sulfur dioxide (SO2) and nitrogen oxides (NOX) that significantly contribute to downwind nonattainment of the 1997 National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone. See 70 FR 25162 (May 12, 2005).

    EPA finalized a limited approval of Ohio's regional haze SIP on July 2, 2012. 77 FR 39177. In a separate action, published on June 7, 2012, EPA finalized a limited disapproval of the Ohio regional haze SIP because of the state's reliance on CAIR to meet certain regional haze requirements, and issued a Federal Implementation Plan (FIP) to address the deficiencies identified in the limited disapproval of Ohio and other states' regional haze plans. 77 FR 33642. In our FIP, we relied on CSAPR to meet certain regional haze requirements notwithstanding that it was stayed at the time. Following additional litigation and the lifting of the stay, EPA began implementation of CSAPR on January 1, 2015.

    Regarding the status of BART and reasonable progress control requirements for non-EGU sources in the state, Ohio's progress report notes that two boilers at one facility, operated by the P.H. Glatfelter Company, were the only non-EGU emission units subject to the BART requirements in Ohio. BART requirements at the P.H. Glatfelter facility reflected alternative measures, which were incorporated into a Federally enforceable permit on March 7, 2011, and the compliance date for these requirements was January 31, 2017. Also, P.H. Glatfelter is currently pursuing conversion to natural gas at its facility to comply with the EPA Industrial Boiler Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) requirements, in the end, this will bring further reductions beyond the BART requirements.

    Additionally, as part of Ohio's consultation with MANE-VU,3 MANE-VU identified 28 stacks from 14 sources in Ohio contributing to visibility impairment based on 2002 emissions. In Ohio's regional haze SIP, the state declined to “commit to any particular course of action beyond the collaboration that occurred in 2009.” Ohio noted, however, that utilities within the state had made significant progress in installing the SO2 controls requested by MANE-VU. In the progress report, and subsequent letter to EPA dated July 11, 2017, Ohio indicated that 27 of the 28 identified units have either shut down or installed post-combustion emission control for SO2 emissions. The final unit does not have a scrubber installed, but to comply with the SO2 Data Requirements Rule (80 FR 51052, August 21, 2015) has accepted a Federally enforceable emission limit.

    3 MANE-VU is a collaborative effort of State governments, Tribal governments, and various Federal agencies established to initiate and coordinate activities associated with the management of regional haze, visibility and other air quality issues in the Northeastern United States. Member State and Tribal governments include: Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Penobscot Indian Nation, Rhode Island, St. Regis Mohawk Tribe, and Vermont.

    EPA proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the status of control measures in its regional haze SIP. Ohio describes the implementation status of measures from its regional haze SIP, including the status of control measures to meet BART and reasonable progress requirements, the status of measures from on-the-book controls and the status of control measures applied to stacks identified by MANE-VU.

    2. Summary of Emissions Reductions Achieved in the State Through Implementation of Measures

    In its progress report, Ohio summarizes the status of the emissions reduction measures that were included in its 2011 regional haze SIP, specifically, the status of the on-the-books emissions reduction measures on which the state relied. Ohio also notes the conclusion in its original regional haze SIP that the majority of visibility-impairing point source emissions in the State come from EGUs. The original SIP showed dramatic reductions in projected emissions from EGUs due to CAIR. Ohio's progress report accordingly discusses the implementation of CAIR and its successor, CSAPR.4 The other measures addressed in the progress report include on- and off-highway mobile source rules, area source rules, and Title IV programs.

    4 CSAPR was issued by EPA to replace CAIR and to help states reduce air pollution and attain CAA standards. See 76 FR 48208 (August 8, 2011) (final rule). CSAPR requires substantial reductions of SO2 and NOX emissions from EGUs in 28 states in the Eastern United States that significantly contribute to downwind nonattainment of the 1997 PM2.5 and ozone NAAQS and 2006 PM2.5 NAAQS.

    As described above, throughout the litigation surrounding CAIR and CSAPR, EPA continued to implement CAIR. Thus, CAIR was in effect through the end of 2014. Ohio explained in its progress report that with CAIR remaining in effect throughout this process, Ohio has acted in accordance with the CAIR program, as determined by the Ohio Regional Haze SIP, resulting in emissions reductions from its EGUs. Data from the EPA Clean Air Markets Division shows NOX emissions from EGUs in Ohio decreased from 370,497 tons per year (TPY) in 2002 to 89,345 TPY in 2014, a 76% decrease. SO2 from EGUs in Ohio decreased from 1,132,069 TPY in 2002 to 290,402 TPY in 2014, a 75% decrease. Table 1 below shows the annual reductions of SO2 and NOX for Ohio. These decreases were a result of CAIR and other implementation strategies. Ohio further concluded that with CSAPR now being implemented, additional reductions in emissions from Ohio EGUs would result because the CSAPR budgets are more stringent than under CAIR. See 80 FR 75706.

    Table 1—Actual SO2 and NOX Emissions Year SO2
  • (tons)
  • NOX
  • (tons)
  • 2002 1,132,069 370,497 2003 1,175,905 359,285 2004 1,091,520 270,449 2005 1,085,485 258,222 2006 962,288 241,995 2007 954,646 240,722 2008 709,444 237,585 2009 600,692 97,562 2010 572,164 108,048 2011 575,474 103,591 2012 323,977 84,281 2013 282,195 86,619 2014 290,403 89,345
    3. Assessment of Visibility Conditions and Changes for Each Mandatory Class I Federal Area in the State

    Ohio noted in its progress report that it does not have any Class I areas within its boundaries, and as the applicable provisions pertain only to states containing Class I areas, no further discussion is necessary. EPA concurs, and proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the applicable provisions of 40 CFR 51.308(g).

    4. Analysis Tracking Emissions Changes of Visibility-Impairing Pollutants

    In its progress report, Ohio tracked changes in emissions of visibility-impairing pollutants using a base year inventory of 2005 and the 2011 National Emissions Inventory, the most recent updated inventory of actual emissions for the state at the time that it developed the progress report. For both years, pollutants inventoried include NOX, fine particulate matter (PM2.5), coarse particulate matter (PM10), ammonia (NH3), and SO2. The emissions inventories, include all point, nonpoint, on-road, non-road, marine-aircraft-rail (MAR), and other sources.

    Table 2 below shows the progress made from 2005-2011 toward the projected 2018 emission reductions indicated in the 2011 Ohio regional haze SIP submission. In the 2005 inventory, SO2 emissions were 1,241,414 TPY and the reduction projected by 2018 was 799,830 TPY for an annual SO2 emission of 441,584 TPY. In 2011, SO2 emissions had already decreased by 563,523 TPY, or achieved 70 percent of the expected reduction. With the exception of NH3, which Ohio predicted to increase during the first implementation period (it actually decreased), all other pollutants at the time of the progress report had achieved more than 50 percent of the expected 2018 emissions reductions.

    Table 2—Emissions Reductions—2005 to 2011 vs. Projected 2018 Reductions (TPY) VOC NOX PM2.5 PM10 NH3 SO2 2005 to 2018 expected reduction 151,522 392,994 3,521 4,497 −10,028 799,830 2005 to 2011 reduction 86,950 266,969 14,996 19,214 19,775 563,523 % toward 2018 RPG 57 68 426 427 N/A 70

    EPA proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the applicable provisions of 40 CFR 51.308.

    5. Assessment of Any Significant Changes in Anthropogenic Emissions

    In its progress report, Ohio indicated that no significant changes in anthropogenic emissions have impeded progress in reducing emissions and improving visibility in Class I areas impacted by Ohio sources. The state referenced its analyses in the progress report identifying an overall downward trend in these emissions.

    EPA proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the applicable provisions of 40 CFR 51.308.

    6. Assessment of Whether the Implementation Plan Elements and Strategies Are Sufficient To Enable Other States To Meet RPGs

    In its progress report, Ohio concludes that the elements and strategies outlined in its original regional haze SIP are sufficient to enable Ohio and states where Ohio contributes to visibility impairments to meet all the established RPGs. To support this conclusion, Ohio notes that Kentucky,5 Maine,6 North Carolina,7 Virginia,8 and West Virginia 9 prepared progress reports demonstrating that visibility is improving at Class I areas and according to these reports Ohio is not interfering with the ability of these states to meet reasonable progress goals.

    5https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2017/08/07/2017-16484/air-plan-approval-kentucky-regional-haze-progress-report.

    6https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2017/07/20/2017-15266/air-plan-approval-me-regional-haze-5-year-progress-report.

    7https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/08/25/2016-20309/air-plan-approval-north-carolina-regional-haze-progress-report.

    8https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2014/05/02/2014-10110/approval-and-promulgation-of-implementation-plans-virginia-regional-haze-five-year-progress-report.

    9https://www.federalregister.gov/articles/2015/06/05/2015-13801/approval-and-promulgation-of-implementation-plans-west-virginia-regional-haze-five-year-progress.

    Ohio's long term strategy relied heavily on the emission reductions from CAIR, a program that has now been replaced by CSAPR. At the present time, the requirements of CSAPR apply to sources in Ohio under the terms of a FIP. The Regional Haze Rule requires an assessment of whether the current “implementation plan” is sufficient to enable the states to meet all established reasonable progress goals. 40 CFR 51.308(g). The term “implementation plan” is defined for purposes of the Regional Haze Rule to mean “any [SIP], [FIP], or Tribal Implementation Plan.” 40 CFR 51.301. EPA is, therefore, proposing to determine that we may consider measures in any issued FIP, as well as those in a state's regional haze SIP, in assessing the adequacy of the “existing implementation plan” under 40 CFR 51.308(g)(6) and (h).

    EPA proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the applicable provisions of 40 CFR 51.308. EPA views this requirement as an assessment that should evaluate emissions and visibility trends and other readily available information. Ohio determined its regional haze SIP is sufficient to enable other States to meet the RPGs for the Class I areas impacted by the State's emissions.

    7. Review of the State's Visibility Monitoring Strategy

    Ohio's progress report states there are no Class I areas within its borders and is not required to have a visibility monitoring strategy in place. EPA concurs, and proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the requirements for a monitoring strategy for regional haze and propose to determine no further modifications to the monitoring strategy are required.

    B. Determination of Adequacy of Existing Regional Haze Plan

    In its progress report, Ohio submitted a negative declaration to EPA regarding the need for additional actions or emission reductions in Ohio beyond those already in place and those to be implemented by 2018 according to Ohio's regional haze plan.

    In the 2016 progress report submittal, Ohio determined the existing regional haze SIP requires no further substantive revision at this time to achieve the RPGs for Class I areas affected by the State's sources. The basis for the State's negative declaration is the finding that visibility has improved at all Class I areas in the MANE-VU region. In addition, SO2, NOX, and PM emissions from the latest emission inventory for Ohio have decreased by more than 50% in the five-year time period, indicating that Ohio is on track to achieve the expected emission reductions outlined in its regional haze SIP.

    EPA proposes to conclude that Ohio has adequately addressed the provisions under 40 CFR 51.308(h) because monitored visibility values and emission trends indicate that Class I areas impacted by Ohio's sources are meeting or exceeding the RPGs for 2018, and are expected to continue to meet or exceed the RPGs for 2018.

    C. Public Participation

    On December 14, 2015, Ohio provided an opportunity for FLMs to review the revision to Ohio's SIP reporting on progress made during the first implementation period toward RPGs for Class I areas outside the state that are affected by emissions from Ohio's sources. This was 60 days in advance of the public hearing.

    Ohio's progress report includes the FLM comments in Appendices B.2 and B.3, and responses to those comments in Appendix B.4 to the progress report. Comments were received from the U.S. Forest Service and National Park Service. Ohio incorporated two of the three comments into the progress report and provided an explanation for not incorporating the third comment in the progress report.

    Ohio also published notification for a public hearing and solicitation for full public comment on the draft progress report in widely distributed publications. A public hearing was held on February 25, 2016. No comments were received and no testimony was provided.

    EPA proposes to find that Ohio has addressed the applicable requirements in 51.308(i) regarding FLM consultation.

    III. What action is EPA taking?

    EPA is proposing to approve Ohio's Regional Haze five-year progress report, submitted March 11, 2016, as meeting the applicable regional haze requirements as set forth in 40 CFR 51.308(g) and 51.308(h).

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the CAA and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, 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 (Public Law 104-4);

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

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

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

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

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

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

    List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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

    Dated: September 28, 2017. Robert A. Kaplan, Acting Regional Administrator, Region 5.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22230 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0413; FRL-9969-47-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; West Virginia; 2015 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to approve the state implementation plan (SIP) revision submitted by the State of West Virginia for the purpose of updating the effective date by which the State regulations incorporate by reference the national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS), additional monitoring methods, and additional equivalent monitoring methods. This update will effectively add the following to the West Virginia SIP: The 2015 ozone NAAQS, monitoring reference and equivalent methods pertaining to fine particulate matter (PM2.5), carbon monoxide (CO), and course particulate matter (PM10), and it will revise the ozone monitoring season to March 1st through October 31st, the Federal Reference Method (FRM), the Federal Equivalent Method (FEM), and the Photochemical Assessment Monitoring Stations (PAMS) network. The SIP revision will also change a reference from the “West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection,” to the “Division of Air Quality.” In the Final Rules section of this Federal Register, EPA is approving the State's SIP submittal as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial submittal and anticipates no adverse comments. A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the direct final rule. If no adverse comments are received in response to this action, no further activity is contemplated. If EPA receives adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received in writing by November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0413 at http://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, the EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the Web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Joseph Schulingkamp, (215) 814-2021, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    For further information on this rulemaking action to approve West Virginia's SIP revisions to update of the effective date by which the State regulations incorporate by reference the Federal NAAQS, additional monitoring methods, and additional equivalent monitoring methods, effectively adding the 2015 ozone NAAQS and ambient air monitoring reference and equivalent methods pertaining to PM2.5, PM10, and CO, and changing the reference to the state air agency, please see the information provided in the direct final action, with the same title, that is located in the “Rules and Regulations” section of this Federal Register publication.

    Dated: September 27, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22255 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0437; FRL-9969-34-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Pennsylvania; Adoption of Control Techniques Guidelines for Control of Volatile Organic Compound Emissions From Miscellaneous Metal Parts Surface Coating, Miscellaneous Plastic Parts Surface Coating, and Pleasure Craft Surface Coatings AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to approve the state implementation plan (SIP) revision submitted by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The revision includes amendments to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection's (PADEP) regulations and addresses the requirement to adopt reasonably available control technology (RACT) for sources covered by EPA's control techniques guidelines (CTG) standards for the following categories: Miscellaneous metal parts surface coating, miscellaneous plastic parts surface coating, and pleasure craft surface coatings, as well as related cleaning activities. The SIP revision also amends regulations for graphic arts systems and mobile equipment repair and refinishing and includes related general administrative amendments. In the Final Rules section of this Federal Register, EPA is approving Pennsylvania's SIP submittal as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial submittal and anticipates no adverse comments. If no adverse comments are received in response to this action, no further activity is contemplated. If EPA receives adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received in writing by November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2017-0437 at http://www.regulations.gov, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, the EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gregory A. Becoat, (215) 814-2036, or by e-mail at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    For further information, please see the information provided in the direct final action, with the same title, that is located in the “Rules and Regulations” section of this Federal Register publication. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

    Dated: September 27, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22240 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 52 [EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0592; FRL-9969-38-Region 3] Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Virginia; Amendment to Ambient Air Quality Standard for Ozone AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposes to approve the state implementation plan (SIP) revision submitted by the Commonwealth of Virginia for the purpose of adding a revised 8-hour ozone standard of 0.070 parts per million (ppm) to the Virginia SIP. This revision incorporates the 2015 ozone national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) as promulgated by EPA and is consistent with the NAAQS set out in our regulations. In the Final Rules section of this Federal Register, EPA is approving Virginia's SIP submittal as a direct final rule without prior proposal because the Agency views this as a noncontroversial submittal and anticipates no adverse comments. A detailed rationale for the approval is set forth in the direct final rule. If no adverse comments are received in response to this action, no further activity is contemplated. If EPA receives adverse comments, the direct final rule will be withdrawn and all public comments received will be addressed in a subsequent final rule based on this proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period. Any parties interested in commenting on this action should do so at this time.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received in writing by November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2016-0592 at http://www.regulations.gov/, or via email to [email protected] For comments submitted at Regulations.gov, follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. For either manner of submission, the EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be confidential business information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e. on the web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, please contact the person identified in the For Further Information Contact section. For the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit http://www2.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Gavin Huang, (215) 814-2042, or by email at [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    For further information, please see the information provided in the direct final action, with the same title, that is located in the “Rules and Regulations” section of this Federal Register publication.

    Dated: September 22, 2017. Cecil Rodrigues, Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22242 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY 40 CFR Part 60 [EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355; FRL-9969-75-OAR] RIN 2060-AT55 Repeal of Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Proposed rule.

    SUMMARY:

    In this action, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to repeal the Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units (EGUs), commonly referred to as the Clean Power Plan (CPP), as promulgated on October 23, 2015.

    DATES:

    Comments. Comments must be received on or before December 15, 2017.

    Public Hearing. If anyone contacts us requesting a public hearing on or before October 31, 2017, we will hold a hearing. Additional information about the hearing, if requested, will be published in a subsequent Federal Register document.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments. Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355, at http://www.regulations.gov. Follow the online instructions for submitting comments. Once submitted, comments cannot be edited or removed from Regulations.gov. The EPA may publish any comment received to its public docket. Do not submit electronically any information you consider to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Multimedia submissions (audio, video, etc.) must be accompanied by a written comment. The written comment is considered the official comment and should include discussion of all points you wish to make. The EPA will generally not consider comments or comment contents located outside of the primary submission (i.e., on the Web, cloud, or other file sharing system). For additional submission methods, the full EPA public comment policy, information about CBI or multimedia submissions, and general guidance on making effective comments, please visit https://www.epa.gov/dockets/commenting-epa-dockets.

    Instructions. Direct your comments on the proposed rule to Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355. The EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket and may be made available online at http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes information claimed to be CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected through http://www.regulations.gov or email. The http://www.regulations.gov Web site is an “anonymous access” system, which means the EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email comment directly to the EPA without going through http://www.regulations.gov, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, the EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If the EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, the EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.

    Docket. The EPA has established a docket for this action under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355. The EPA has previously established a docket for the October 23, 2015, CPP under Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2013-0602. All documents in the docket are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, e.g., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically at http://www.regulations.gov or in hard copy at the EPA Docket Center (EPA/DC), EPA WJC West Building, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the EPA Docket Center is (202) 566-1742.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mr. Peter Tsirigotis, Sector Policies and Programs Division (D205-01), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, NC 27711; telephone number: (888) 627-7764; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Submitting CBI. Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI electronically through http://www.regulations.gov or email. Send or deliver information identified as CBI to only the following address: OAQPS Document Control Officer (Room C404-02), Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; Attn: Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2017-0355.

    Clearly mark the part or all of the information that you claim to be CBI. For CBI information in a disk or CD-ROM that you mail to the EPA, mark the outside of the disk or CD-ROM as CBI and then identify electronically within the disk or CD-ROM the specific information that is claimed as CBI. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public docket. If you submit a CD-ROM or disk that does not contain CBI, mark the outside of the disk or CD-ROM clearly that it does not contain CBI. Information marked as CBI will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) part 2.

    Acronyms and Abbreviations. A number of acronyms and abbreviations are used in this preamble. While this may not be an exhaustive list, to ease the reading of this preamble and for reference purposes, the following terms and acronyms are defined:

    BACT Best available control technology BDT Best demonstrated technology BSER Best system of emission reduction CAA Clean Air Act CBI Confidential business information CFR Code of Federal Regulations CO2 Carbon dioxide CPP Clean Power Plan EGU Electric utility generating unit EPA U.S. Environmental Protection Agency GHGs Greenhouse gases MACT Maximum achievable control technology NESHAP National emission standards for hazardous air pollutants NTTAA National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act OMB Office of Management and Budget PRA Paperwork Reduction Act RFA Regulatory Flexibility Act RIA Regulatory Impact Analysis UMRA Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    Organization of This Document. The following outline is provided to aid in locating information in this preamble.

    I. Executive Summary II. Background A. The CPP B. Judicial Challenge to the CPP C. Executive Order 13783 and the EPA's Review of the CPP III. Basis for Proposed Repeal of the CPP A. Statutory Text B. Legislative History C. Prior Agency Practice D. Statutory Context E. Broader Policy Concerns F. Proposed Rescission of Legal Memorandum G. Conclusion IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews A. Executive Order 12866: Regulatory Planning and Review and Executive Order 13563: Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs C. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) D. Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism G. Executive Order 13175: Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments H. Executive Order 13045: Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks I. Executive Order 13211: Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use J. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) K. Executive Order 12898: Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations V. Statutory Authority I. Executive Summary

    By this notice, the EPA is proposing to repeal the CPP. See 80 FR 64662 (October 23, 2015). In accordance with Executive Order 13783, 82 FR 16093 (March 31, 2017), the EPA has reviewed the CPP and is initiating this action based on the outcome of that review. Specifically, the EPA proposes a change in the legal interpretation as applied to section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act (CAA), on which the CPP was based, to an interpretation that the Agency proposes is consistent with the CAA's text, context, structure, purpose, and legislative history, as well as with the Agency's historical understanding and exercise of its statutory authority. Under the interpretation proposed in this notice, the CPP exceeds the EPA's statutory authority and would be repealed. The EPA welcomes comment on the legal interpretation addressed in this proposed rulemaking.

    The EPA has not determined the scope of any potential rule under CAA section 111(d) to regulate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from existing EGUs, and, if it will issue such a rule, when it will do so and what form that rule will take. The EPA is considering the scope of such a rule and is intending to issue an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) in the near future. That ANPRM will solicit information on systems of emission reduction that are in accord with the legal interpretation proposed in this notice (i.e., those that are applicable at and to an individual source). The ANPRM will also solicit information on compliance measures and state planning requirements. However, the EPA is not soliciting comments on such information with this proposal.

    CAA section 111(d) requires the EPA to promulgate emission guidelines for existing sources that reflect the “best system of emission reduction” (BSER) under certain circumstances. Notwithstanding the CPP, all of the EPA's other CAA section 111 regulations are based on a BSER consisting of technological or operational measures that can be applied to or at a single source.1 The CPP departed from this practice by instead setting carbon dioxide (CO2) emission guidelines for existing power plants that can only realistically be effected by measures that cannot be employed to, for, or at a particular source. Instead, the CPP encompassed measures that would generally require power generators to change their energy portfolios through generation-shifting (rather than better equipping or operating their existing plants), including through the creation or subsidization of significant amounts of generation from power sources entirely outside the regulated source categories, such as solar and wind energy. This raised substantial concerns that the CPP would necessitate changes to a state's energy policy, such as a grid-wide shift from coal-fired to natural gas-fired generation, and from fossil fuel-fired generation to renewable generation.

    1 This is true not only for all of the handful of existing CAA section 111(d) regulations issued prior to the CPP, but also of the much larger set of new source performance standards issued under CAA section 111(b), which are predicated on the same key statutory term “best system of emission reduction.”

    Executive Order 13783 directs the EPA to determine whether the CPP exceeds the bounds of the authority delegated to the Agency by Congress. See Executive Order 13783, Sections 1(e) and 4(c). In the course of this review, the EPA is reconsidering the legal interpretation underlying the CPP and is proposing to interpret the phrase “best system of emission reduction” in a way that is consistent with the Agency's historical practice of determining a BSER by considering only measures that can be applied to or at the source. As discussed in more detail below, under the interpretation proposed here, the CPP exceeds the bounds of the statute. Consistent with this proposed interpretation, we propose to repeal the CPP and rescind the accompanying legal memoranda.

    II. Background A. The CPP

    The EPA promulgated the CPP under section 111 of the CAA. 42 U.S.C. 7411. Clean Air Act section 111(b) authorizes the EPA to issue nationally applicable new source performance standards limiting air pollution from “new sources” in source categories that cause or contribute to air pollution that may reasonably be anticipated to endanger public health or welfare. Id. § 7411(b)(1). In 2015, the EPA issued such a rule for CO2 emissions from certain new fossil fuel-fired power plants 2 in light of the Agency's assessment “that [greenhouse gases] endanger public health, now and in the future.” Standards of Performance for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from New, Modified, and Reconstructed Stationary Sources: Electric Generating Units, 80 FR 64510, 64518 (October 23, 2015) (New Source Rule); see also Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases Under Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act, 74 FR 66496 (December 15, 2009).3 Under certain circumstances, when the EPA issues a CAA section 111(b) standard, the EPA must then prescribe CAA section 111(d) regulations under which each state must submit a plan to establish standards for existing sources in the same category. 42 U.S.C. 7411(d)(1). The EPA relied on that authority to issue the CPP, which, for the first time, required states to submit plans specifically designed to limit CO2 emissions from certain fossil fuel-fired power plants.

    2 The rule identified “[f]ossil fuel-fired EGUs” as “by far the largest emitters of [greenhouse gases] among stationary sources in the U.S., primarily in the form of CO2.” 80 FR 64510, 64522 (October 23, 2015).

    3 The substance of the 2009 Endangerment Finding is not at issue in this proposed rulemaking, and we are not soliciting comment on the EPA's assessment of the impacts of GHGs with this proposal.

    The CPP established emission guidelines for states to follow in limiting CO2 emissions from those plants. These emission guidelines included nationally uniform CO2 emission performance rates for two subcategories of existing fossil fuel-fired power plants: Electric utility steam generating units and stationary combustion turbines. See 80 FR 64707.

    In the CPP, the EPA determined that the BSER for CO2 emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired power plants was the combination of emission rate improvements and limitations on overall emissions by affected power plants that can be accomplished through a combination of three sets of measures, which the EPA called “building blocks”:

    1. Improving heat rate at affected coal-fired steam generating units;

    2. Substituting increased generation from lower-emitting existing natural gas combined cycle units for decreased generation from higher-emitting affected steam generating units; and

    3. Substituting increased generation from new zero-emitting renewable energy generating capacity for decreased generation from affected fossil fuel-fired generating units. Id. at 64707.

    While building block 1 constituted measures that could be applied directly to a source—that is, integrated into its design or operation—building blocks 2 and 3 employed measures that departed from this traditional, source-specific approach to regulation and that were expressly designed to shift the balance of coal-, gas-, and renewable-generated power at the grid-wide level, subjecting these building blocks to claims that they constituted energy, rather than environmental, policy.

    That the CPP depends on the employment of measures that cannot be applied at and to an individual source is evident from its treatment of coal-fired power plants. The rule established performance standards for coal-fired plants assuming a uniform emissions rate well below that which could be met by existing units through any retrofit technology of reasonable cost available at the time. This means that, in order to comply, many owners or operators of existing coal-fired units were expected to shift generation from such units to gas-fired units or to renewable generation. Similarly, the rule contemplated that gas-fired units would shift generation to renewable generation. The rule, therefore, is formulated in reliance on and anticipation of actions taken across the electric grid, rather than actions taken at and applied to individual units.

    B. Judicial Challenge to the CPP

    Due to concerns about the EPA's legal authority and record, 27 states and a number of other parties sought judicial review of the CPP in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. West Virginia v. EPA, No. 15-1363 (and consolidated cases) (D.C. Cir.). On February 9, 2016, the Supreme Court stayed implementation of the CPP pending judicial review. Order in Pending Case, West Virginia v. EPA, No. 15A773 (U.S. February 9, 2016). The cases were argued before the D.C. Circuit, sitting en banc, on September 27, 2016. Following oral argument, the EPA moved to hold the cases in abeyance, and, on April 28, 2017, the court granted motions to hold the cases in abeyance for 60 days and directed the parties to file briefs addressing whether the cases should be remanded to the Agency rather than held in abeyance. Order, Docket Entry No. 1673071. On August 8, 2017, the court issued an order holding the cases in abeyance for a further 60-day period and directed the EPA to file status reports at 30-day intervals. Order, Docket Entry No. 1687838.

    C. Executive Order 13783 and the EPA's Review of the CPP

    On March 28, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13783, which affirms the “national interest to promote clean and safe development of our Nation's vast energy resources, while at the same time avoiding regulatory burdens that unnecessarily encumber energy production, constrain economic growth, and prevent job creation.” See Executive Order 13783, Section 1(a). The Executive Order directs all executive departments and agencies, including the EPA, to “immediately review existing regulations that potentially burden the development or use of domestically produced energy resources and appropriately suspend, revise, or rescind those that unduly burden the development of domestic energy resources beyond the degree necessary to protect the public interest or otherwise comply with the law.” Id. Section 1(c). The Executive Order further affirms that it is “the policy of the United States that necessary and appropriate environmental regulations comply with the law.” Id. Section 1(e). Moreover, the Executive Order specifically directs the EPA to review and initiate reconsideration proceedings to “suspend, revise, or rescind” the CPP, “as appropriate and consistent with law.” Id. Section 4(a)-(c). (The Executive Order also directs the EPA to undertake this process of review and reconsideration with regard to the New Source Rule issued under CAA section 111(b), which was a condition precedent to the promulgation of the CPP.)

    In a document signed the same day as Executive Order 13783, and published in the Federal Register at 82 FR 16329 (April 4, 2017), the EPA announced that, consistent with the Executive Order, it was initiating its review of the CPP and providing notice of forthcoming proposed rulemakings consistent with the Executive Order.4

    4 The EPA also withdrew the proposed federal plan and model trading rules, proposed amendments to certain regulations under 40 CFR subpart B implementing CAA section 111(d), and proposed rule regarding the Clean Energy Incentive Plan. 82 FR 16144 (April 3, 2017).

    The EPA has concluded its initial review of the CPP, as directed by Executive Order 13783. That review raised substantial concerns that the CPP is not consistent with the policy articulated in Section 1 of the Executive Order. See Executive Order 13783, Section 4(a). For example, numerous states, regulated entities and other stakeholders warned that the CPP threatened to impose massive costs on the power sector and consumers; invaded traditional areas of state regulation over the mix of energy generation within their borders; departed radically from prior regulatory practice and longstanding reading of the statute; and did not adequately ensure the national interest in affordable, reliable electricity, including from coal generation. See id. Section 1(b).

    In the course of the EPA's review of the CPP, the Agency also reconsidered its interpretation of CAA section 111, and it is on that basis that the Agency now proposes to repeal the CPP. Section 1 of the Executive Order recognizes that the EPA should, “to the extent permitted by law, . . . take appropriate actions to promote clean air and clean water for the American people, while also respecting the proper roles of Congress and the States concerning these matters in our constitutional republic.” Id. Section 1(d). As discussed below, the EPA proposes to determine that the CPP is not within Congress's grant of authority to the Agency under the governing statute. It is not in the interests of the EPA, or in accord with its mission of environmental protection consistent with the rule of law, to expend its resources along the path of implementing a rule, receiving and passing judgment on state plans, or promulgating federal plans in furtherance of a policy that is not within the bounds of our statutory authority.

    The EPA is proposing to repeal the CPP in its entirety. The EPA proposes to take this action because it proposes to determine that the rule exceeds its authority under the statute, that those portions of the rule which arguably do not exceed its authority are not severable and separately implementable, and that it is not appropriate for a rule that exceeds statutory authority—especially a rule of this magnitude and with this level of impact on areas of traditional state regulatory authority—to remain in existence pending a potential, successive rulemaking process. Specifically, the performance standards that the CPP established for existing sources were predicated on a combined use of the three “building blocks” described above. Because, under the interpretation proposed here, the second and third “building blocks” exceed the EPA's authority under CAA section 111, and because, as the EPA determined when it issued the CPP, the first “building block,” as designed, could not stand on its own if the other “building blocks” were repealed, any potential future rule that regulates GHG emissions from existing EGUs under CAA section 111(d) must begin with a fundamental reevaluation of appropriate and authorized control measures and recalculation of performance standards.

    The EPA's mission is to “protect and enhance the quality of the Nation's air resources,” 42 U.S.C. 7401(b)(1), but the Agency must do so within the authority delegated to it by Congress. To that end, “[a] primary goal” of the CAA “is to encourage or otherwise promote reasonable Federal, State, and local governmental actions, consistent with the provisions of [the CAA] . . . .” 42 U.S.C. 7401(c) (emphases added). Where the EPA's regulations exceed the Agency's statutory authority, it is appropriate for the Agency to correct that error and consider what statutory tools are duly available to it, to ensure that its regulations are effective, enforceable, administrable, and grounded in valid authority. Accordingly, the EPA continues to consider whether it should issue another CAA section 111(d) rule addressing GHG emissions from existing EGUs and, if so, what would be the appropriate form and scope of that rule. See, e.g., API v. EPA, 52 F.3d 1113, 1119 (D.C. Cir. 1995) (“It is axiomatic that an administrative agency's power to promulgate legislative regulations is limited to the authority delegated by Congress”) (internal citations omitted); see also Michigan v. EPA, 268 F.3d 1075 (D.C. Cir. 2001) (same). The EPA is engaged in the process of considering the scope of such a rule, and is intending to issue an ANPRM in the near future to solicit information on systems of emission reduction that are in accord with the legal interpretation proposed in this notice (i.e., those that are applicable to and at an individual source), as well as information on compliance measures and state planning requirements. This notice does not solicit comment on such issues, which will be open for comment in the ANPRM.

    III. Basis for Proposed Repeal of the CPP

    The basis for the proposed repeal of the CPP is the EPA's proposed interpretation of CAA section 111, which is discussed in this notice. The EPA proposes to determine that this interpretation is the most appropriate reading of the statute in light of the text, its legislative history, prior practice under CAA section 111, statutory context, and in consideration of broader policy implications. If the proposed interpretation is finalized, the CPP would be repealed.5

    5 Under the EPA's proposal, the Agency lacks authority to consider measures other than those that apply at, to, and for a particular source when determining the BSER. Because the CPP is in large part premised on such measures, if the proposed interpretation is finalized, the CPP would be repealed. Although on-site efficiency measures may be considered in a future CAA section 111 standard, as explained in the CPP, building block 1, as analyzed, cannot stand on its own. 80 FR 64758 n.444; see also id. at 64658 (discussing severability of the building blocks). As noted above, the EPA is not taking comment on on-site efficiency measures with this proposal.

    The EPA's ability to revisit existing regulations is well-grounded in the law. Specifically, the EPA has inherent authority to reconsider, repeal, or revise past decisions to the extent permitted by law so long as the Agency provides a reasoned explanation. The CAA complements the EPA's inherent authority to reconsider prior rulemakings by providing the Agency with broad authority to prescribe regulations as necessary. 42 U.S.C. 760l(a). The authority to reconsider prior decisions exists in part because the EPA's interpretations of statutes it administers “[are not] instantly carved in stone,” but must be evaluated “on a continuing basis.” Chevron U.S.A. Inc. v. NRDC, Inc., 467 U.S. 837, 863-64 (1984). This is true when, as is the case here, review is undertaken “in response to . . . a change in administrations.” National Cable & Telecommunications Ass'n v. Brand X Internet Services, 545 U.S. 967, 981 (2005). Indeed, “[a]gencies obviously have broad discretion to reconsider a regulation at any time.” Clean Air Council v. Pruitt, 862 F.3d 1, 8-9 (D.C. Cir. 2017).

    After reconsidering the statutory text, context, and legislative history, and in consideration of the EPA's historical practice under CAA section 111 as reflected in its other existing CAA section 111 regulations, the Agency proposes to return to a reading of CAA section 111(a)(1) (and its constituent term, “best system of emission reduction”) as being limited to emission reduction measures that can be applied to or at an individual stationary source. That is, such measures must be based on a physical or operational change to a building, structure, facility, or installation at that source, rather than measures that the source's owner or operator can implement on behalf of the source at another location. The EPA believes that this is the best construction of CAA section 111(a)(1), as explained in detail below, for several reasons. First, it accords with the meaning and application of relevant terms and phrases in CAA section 111 as they are used in other, related sections of the CAA. Second, it aligns with the Congressional intent underlying CAA section 111 as informed by relevant legislative history. Third, it aligns with the EPA's prior understanding of CAA section 111 as reflected in the Agency's prior regulatory actions.6 Fourth, it avoids illogical results when considered in light of other provisions of the statute. Finally, it avoids a policy shift of great significance for the relationship between the federal government and the states and avoids conflict with other federal legislation and interference with the separate role and jurisdiction of another federal agency, where there is inadequate indication that Congress intended to authorize the EPA to take actions leading to those results.

    6 As noted above, the EPA's prior understanding of this statutory section and its key term “best system of emission reduction” is reflected not only in the handful of existing CAA section 111(d) rules that predated the CPP, but also in the much larger set of new-source rules under CAA section 111(b).

    A. Statutory Text

    The phrase “system of emission reduction” provides the starting point for developing performance standards under CAA section 111. An expansive interpretation of the phrase “system of emission reduction” would yield a greater universe of measures that could be considered to establish emission limits; conversely, a narrower reading would have the opposite effect. See 80 FR 64720 (explaining that the “first step” is to “identify `system[s] of emission reduction' that have been `adequately demonstrated' for a particular category.”).7 Thus, the phrase's scope correlates directly with the breadth of the Administrator's discretion in determining what system is the best for purposes of establishing the degree of emission limitation to be reflected in a standard of performance. See 42 U.S.C. 7411(a)(1) (“[t]he term `standard of performance' means a standard for emissions of air pollutants which reflects the degree of emission limitation achievable through the application of the [BSER]”).

    7 Historically, this step is referred to as a “technology review,” and leads to a level of control “commonly referred to as best demonstrated technology (BDT).” See Oil and Natural Gas Sector: New Source Performance Standards and National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants Review, 76 FR 52738, 52741 (August 23, 2011); Regulating Greenhouse Gas Emissions Under the Clean Air Act, 73 FR 44354, 44486 (July 30, 2008).

    Though not further defined in the CAA, the phrase “system of emission reduction” cannot be read in isolation. In promulgating the CPP, the EPA explained that the phrase carries important limitations. Id. at 64762. Specifically, the EPA reasoned that “because the `degree of emission limitation' must be `achievable through the application of the best system of emission reduction' (emphasis added), the `system of emission reduction' must be limited to a set of measures that work together to reduce emissions that are implementable by the sources themselves.” Id. “As a practical matter,” the EPA continued, “the `source' includes the `owner or operator' of any building, structure, facility, or installation for which a standard of performance is applicable.” Id. “Thus, a `system of emission reduction' for purposes of CAA section 111(d) means a set of measures that source owners or operators can implement to achieve an emission limitation applicable to their existing source.” Id. In reaching this conclusion, the EPA noted that “the terms `implement' and `apply' are used interchangeably.” See Legal Memorandum at 84 n.175. Here, contrary to the conclusion in the CPP, the EPA is proposing to interpret the phrase “through the application of the best system of emission reduction” as requiring that the BSER be something that can be applied to or at the source and not something that the source's owner or operator can implement on behalf of the source at another location. Interpreting the statute as carrying this additional limiting principle ensures conformity with the statutory context and congressional intent.

    The EPA's proposed interpretation is also guided by CAA section 111(d)'s direction that standards be established “for any existing source,” (emphasis added) and not for other sources or entities. See also 42 U.S.C. 7401(a)(3) (finding that “air pollution control at its source is the primary responsibility of States and local governments”) (emphasis added). Further, the “for any existing source” phrasing in CAA section 111(d) mirrors the “for new sources” phrasing in the first sentence of section 111(b)(1)(B). In other words, as applied to both new source standards and existing source standards promulgated under CAA section 111, if standards must be set for individual sources, it is reasonable to expect that such standards would be predicated on measures that can be applied to or at those same individual sources.

    Adopting a source-oriented reading of “through the application of the best system of emission reduction” also keeps CAA section 111 in line with other CAA standard-setting provisions. The term “application” is used throughout the statute in many different contexts. But under the CAA's standard-setting provisions, it signals a physical or operational change to a source—for example, maximum achievable control technology (MACT) is developed “through application of measures, processes, methods, systems or techniques including, but not limited to, measures which—(A) reduce the volume of, or eliminate emissions of, such pollutants through process changes, substitution of materials or other modifications, (B) enclose systems or processes to eliminate emissions, (C) collect, capture or treat such pollutants when released from a process, stack, storage or fugitive emissions point, (D) are design, equipment, work practice, or operational standards . . . , or (E) are a combination of the above;” 8 best available control technology (BACT) is developed “through application of production processes and available methods, systems, and techniques, including fuel cleaning, clean fuels, or treatment or innovative fuel combustion techniques for control;” 9 and motor vehicle and engine standards reflect the “application of technology,” 10 and the “application of the requisite control measures” to specific sources.11 In short, the term suggests that—while a source's owner or operator indeed implements each of these measures—the measures should be applied to the source itself (i.e., from the perspective of the source and not its owner or operator).

    8 42 U.S.C. 7412(d)(2).

    9 42 U.S.C. 7479(e).

    10 42 U.S.C. 7521(a)(3)(A)(i) (applying technology available by model year for mobile sources).

    11 42 U.S.C. 7521(a)(3)(D) (concerning rebuilding practices of heavy-duty engines).

    B. Legislative History

    Even if the term “application” did not denote a source-oriented “system of emission reduction,” the term “system” too is historically rooted in a physical or operational change to the source itself. As discussed in the CPP, CAA section 111(a)(1)—particularly the phrase “system of emission reduction”—evolved from a joint conference between committees of the House and Senate during the 1970 CAA Amendments. 80 FR 64763-64. The underlying House bill provided that new sources must be “designed and equipped” to control emissions using “available technology.” H.R. Rep. No. 91-1146 (June 3, 1970), 1970 CAA Legis. Hist. at 900; see also H.R. 17255, 5, 1970 CAA Legis. Hist. at 922. The Senate bill provided that standards of performance reflect achievable limits “through application of the latest available control technology, processes, operating methods, or other alternatives.” S. 4358, 6, 1970 CAA Legis. Hist. at 555. Though the Senate's formulation is broader than the House bill, “other alternatives” should be interpreted ejusdem generis (of the same kind, class, or nature) with the preceding control techniques. “Control technology,” “processes,” and “operating methods” are properly read to denote measures applied at or to, and implementable at the level of, the individual source—and “other alternatives” should be read in the same fashion. Thus, the emission-reduction measures contemplated by the Senate also targeted a physical or operational change to the source itself. In short, both bills were premised on physical or operational changes that would be applied to a source, and there is no indication that the enacted phrase “system of emission reduction” was intended to expand the scope of CAA section 111 to authorize the EPA to determine that the BSER encompasses measures that extend beyond-the-source itself.12

    12 “System” appears in a few places in the 1970 CAA Amendments. Most notably, Congress used the term throughout Title II, which sheds light on what Congress may have understood “system” to mean at the time. Specifically, section 202 of the CAA provided that “[s]uch standards shall be applicable to such vehicles and engines for their useful life . . . whether such vehicles and engines are designed as complete systems or incorporate devices to prevent or control such pollution.” H.R. Rep. No. 91-1783 (December 17, 1970), 1970 CAA Legis. Hist. at 166. See also, e.g., section 203, id. at 170 (“for the purpose of permitting modifications to the emission control device or system of such vehicle”); section 206, id. (“The Administrator shall test any emission control system incorporated in a motor vehicle or motor vehicle engine” and “the Administrator shall issue a verification of compliance with emission standards for such system when incorporated in vehicles”). In each of these instances, the word “system” appears to be more expansive than a discrete emission control device, but is nonetheless a vital part of the source: The vehicle or vehicle engine. It is evident, therefore, that Congress associated the word “system” with phrases that correspond with a source-specific scope. In CAA section 111, the word “system” as used within the phrase “best system of emission reduction” and its relevance in setting standards of performance, which are themselves established “for new sources” and “for any existing source,” similarly suggest that a “system of emission reduction” is applied to or at the source.

    The 1977 CAA Amendments do not undermine this understanding. Congress added the word “technological” to “system of emission reduction” in order to “upgrade” standards of performance “to require the use of the best technological system” and “preclude the use of low-sulfur coal alone as a means of compliance.” 13 H.R. Rep. No. 95-654 (August 3, 1977), 1977 CAA Legis. Hist. at 510. Thus, as explained in the House report, the addition of the word “technological” was intended to prohibit sole reliance on a particular control technique from being considered the BSER. It was not an indication that CAA section 111 previously authorized beyond-the-source controls. The question of whether a control technique or emission reduction system is or is not “technological” is a distinct question from whether it applies at and is limited to the level of the individual source.

    13 In the CPP, the EPA explained that Congress added “precombustion cleaning or treatment of fuels” to CAA section 111 because it recognized that even technological “systems of emission reduction” could involve actions that were implemented on behalf of the source and not merely applied to the source. 80 FR 64765; Legal Memorandum at 87, 129. First, Congress added “precombustion cleaning or treatment of fuels” to the definition of “technological system of continuous emission reduction” in CAA section 111(a)(7) because Congress also redefined “standard of performance” to require fossil fuel-fired power plants to achieve “a percentage reduction in the emissions . . . which would have resulted from the use of fuels which are not subject to treatment prior to combustion.” 1977 CAA Amendments, Public Law 95-95, 109, 91 Stat. 685, 700 (August 7, 1977). Second, precombustion cleaning or treatment of fuels is integral to the operation of a regulated source and does not necessarily occur off-site of an existing source. And regardless of where these preparatory measures are conducted, the use of the fuels is a measure applicable to and performed at the level of, and at or within, the bounds of an individual source. Finally, to the extent that fuel cleaning does occur off-site, this demonstrates that Congress understood CAA section 111 to be limited to source-specific measures unless specific authorization was otherwise provided.

    Though the 1990 CAA Amendments removed the term “technological” from CAA section 111(a)(1), there is no indication that Congress intended to expand the phrase “system of emission reduction” beyond a physical or operational change to the source. With the newly enacted Acid Rain provisions under title IV (which instituted a sulfur dioxide (SO2) cap-and-trade program for fossil fuel-fired power plants), Congress no longer required the use of technological controls under CAA section 111, but provided that if the SO2 cap for new sources was abolished, then CAA section 111 would again impose a technological standard. 1990 CAA Amendments, Public Law 101-549, 403, 104 Stat. at 2631 (November 15, 1990). In effect, this authorized the EPA to consider revising standards to once again allow new sources to use low-sulfur coal in lieu of installing the latest technological control. But there is nothing in the statutory text or its legislative history to suggest that CAA section 111 standards may be based on something other than a physical or operational change to the source itself.

    C. Prior Agency Practice

    Associating a “system of emission reduction” with a physical or operational change to the source itself reflects the EPA's historical understanding of this statutory provision as reflected in its prior regulatory actions under this statutory provision. Indeed, the EPA has issued numerous rules under CAA section 111 (both the limited set of existing source rules under CAA section 111(d) and the much larger set of new source rules under CAA section 111(b)). All those rules limited their BSER to physical or operational measures taken at and applicable to individual sources, with only one exception—a rule that was vacated by the D.C. Circuit on other grounds.14

    14 The Clean Air Mercury Rule, 70 FR 28606 (May 18, 2005), as discussed in footnote 21, was still ultimately predicated on measures taken at the level of individual sources, an approach fundamentally different than the CPP's second and third “building blocks.”

    The EPA first interpreted the phrase “system of emission reduction” as it relates to CAA section 111(d) when the Agency promulgated procedures and requirements for the submittal of state plans in 1975. At the time of the 1970 CAA Amendments, CAA section 111(d) required states to submit plans that established “emission standards” for existing sources, a term that the statute did not define. In its 1974 notice of proposed rulemaking, the EPA interpreted that term by explaining that CAA “section 111(d) permits [the Administrator] to approve State emission standards only if they reflect application of the best systems of emission reduction (considering the cost of such reduction) that are available for designated facilities.” 39 FR 36102, 36102 (October 7, 1974) (emphasis added). By interpreting “emission standards” as requiring application of the BSER, however, many commenters were confused and assumed that the degree of control required would be the same as that required by a “standard of performance” for new sources under CAA section 111(b), which Congress had explicitly defined in that way.15 To clear up this confusion, the EPA explained that, “[a]lthough the general principle (application of best adequately demonstrated technology, considering costs) will be the same in both cases, the degrees of control represented by the Agency's emission guidelines will ordinarily be less stringent than those required by standards of performance for new sources because the costs of controlling existing facilities will ordinarily be greater than those for control of new sources.” 16 40 FR 53340, 53341 (November 17, 1975) (emphases added). The EPA also described the legislative history of CAA section 111, explaining that Congress “intended the technology-based approach of that section to extend (making allowances for the costs of controlling existing sources) to action under section 111(d). In this view, it was unnecessary . . . to specify explicit substantive criteria in section 111(d) because the intent to require a technology-based approach could be inferred from placement of the provision in section 111.” Id. at 53342 (emphases added); see also id. at 53343 (“[T]he approach taken in section 111(d) may be viewed as . . . [a] decision[ ] . . . [t]o adopt a technology-based approach similar to that for new sources.”). Thus, in 1975, the EPA clearly interpreted the phrase “system of emission reduction” to be technology-based and source-focused for both CAA section 111(b) standards of performance and CAA section 111(d) emission standards.17 The EPA believes that the Agency's historical interpretation of CAA section 111(d) and the phrase “system of emission reduction,” expressed at the point in time closest to when Congress enacted those provisions, is the most appropriate reading of the statute.

    15 Currently, the same statutory definition in CAA section 111(a)(1) applies to new and existing sources, and we can identify no legislative history to suggest that Congress had a different scope in mind for existing sources. We think it unlikely that Congress would have intended a significantly broader scope without indicating some intent to do so. Indeed, the opposite may be true. In 1977, Congress expressly declined to apply the term “technological” to existing source performance standards. But after the 1990 CAA Amendments, the same definition applies to new and existing source performance standards.

    16 The EPA's historical view that emission guidelines for existing sources would be less stringent than standards of performance for new sources also weighs against the expansive interpretation of “system of emission reduction” adopted in the CPP. As many commenters on that rule pointed out, the EPA's approach in the CPP, relying on measures beyond those that can be applied to and at an individual source, resulted in the uniform performance rates prescribed by the CAA section 111(d) emission guidelines being more stringent than the standards of performance the Agency promulgated for new sources under CAA section 111(b). 80 FR 64785-87. We justified this result in two primary ways. First, we pointed out the timing differences between the two rules' requirements, noting that the CAA section 111(b) standards of performance were applicable as of the date of the proposed rule, whereas the CPP's requirements were not applicable until 7 years after promulgation, with final compliance due in 2030. Id. at 64785. Thus, we concluded that the proper “point of comparison” was the year 2023, right after the first obligations under the CPP were due and the Agency's 8-year review of the CAA section 111(b) standards would be complete. Id. Second, we argued that the CPP contained sufficient flexibilities, both for sources and for states, that any comparison between the two rules was inapt. Id. at 64785-86. The EPA has reconsidered these arguments and now considers them insufficient justification for abandoning the Agency's historical view of the appropriate relative stringency of CAA section 111(b) and 111(d) requirements. With respect to timing, it is entirely speculative that some future standard of performance promulgated under CAA section 111(b) might be more stringent than the current CAA section 111(d) emission guidelines. And while the CPP does contain certain flexibilities to ease the burdens of compliance, such as phased-in compliance deadlines, those flexibilities were only necessary because actual affected sources could not meet the overly stringent uniform performance rates (or the equivalent rate- or mass-based goals) without them.

    17 Additionally, the EPA historically equated the phrase “system of emission reduction” with the CAA's “best available retrofit technology” (BART) requirement. See 45 FR 80084, 80090 (December 2, 1980) (codified at 40 CFR 51.301) (defining BART as an “emission limitation based on the degree of reduction achievable through the application of the best system of continuous emission reduction for each pollutant which is emitted by an existing stationary facility”). While the EPA's BART regulations permit states, subject to certain conditions, to implement trading programs and other “alternative” measures in lieu of BART, see 40 CFR 51.308(e)(2), these measures are not considered to be BART. Instead, states may adopt them “rather than requiring sources to install, operate, and maintain BART,” but only if they will achieve “greater reasonable progress” toward Congress's national visibility goal. Id. (emphasis added).

    D. Statutory Context

    The EPA's proposed interpretation of CAA section 111 is reinforced by the section's broader statutory context. Indeed, interpreting CAA section 111(a)(1) to extend beyond-the-source could have the unintended consequence of imposing greater emissions reductions under CAA section 111 than could be established as the BACT under CAA section 165, which relies on CAA section 111 standards as a floor.18 See 40 CFR 52.21(b)(12); see also 40 CFR 51.165(a)(1)(xiii) (defining “lowest achievable emission rate,” i.e., LAER, as in no event authorizing emissions “in excess of the amount allowable under an applicable new source performance standard”). BACT requires certain major emitting sources 19 to achieve an emission limitation “through application of production processes and available methods, systems, and techniques, including fuel cleaning, clean fuels, or treatment or innovative fuel combustion techniques for control.” 42 U.S.C. 7479(3). Traditionally, the EPA has recommended that permitting authorities “conduct a separate BACT analysis for each emissions unit at a facility,” but more recently has interpreted CAA section 169 to include control methods that can be used facility-wide. EPA, PSD and Title V Permitting Guidance for Greenhouse Gases, 22-23 (March 2011). Nonetheless, the EPA has consistently held that BACT encompasses “all `available' control options . . . that have the potential for practical application to the emissions unit and the regulated pollutant under evaluation.” Id. at 24.

    18 Although BACT applies to new and modified sources, like CAA section 111(b), the EPA can discern no textual basis in CAA section 111(a)(1) to interpret the BSER differently for purposes of CAA section 111(d). Indeed, the EPA ruled out generation-shifting measures for new sources based on practicability rather than legal grounds. See Legal Memorandum at 1-5. Accordingly, interpretative constraints applicable to CAA section 111(a)(1) for purposes of CAA section 111(b) should also apply for purposes of CAA section 111(d).

    19 42 U.S.C. 7479(1) (defining “major emitting facility” as sources within certain source categories “which emit, or have the potential to emit, one hundred tons per year or more of any air pollutant” or “any other source with the potential to emit two hundred and fifty tons per year or more of any air pollutant.”).

    In other words, BACT must be applied to the source itself (on a unit-specific or facility-wide basis) and does not include control options that are beyond-the-source, such as generation-shifting measures.20 Accordingly, the EPA proposes to determine that the statutory scheme is appropriately read to harmonize these provisions. Under this interpretation, the BSER should be interpreted as a source-specific measure, in light of the fact that BACT standards, for which the BSER is expressly linked by statutory text, are unambiguously intended to be source-specific.

    20See U.S. EPA, PSD and Title V Permitting Guidance for Greenhouse Gases, 24 (March 2011) (BACT encompasses “all `available' control options . . . that have the potential for practical application to the emissions unit”).

    Neither title IV nor the interstate-transport rulemakings (e.g., the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule) supports a different interpretation of CAA section 111. In the CPP, the EPA identified the Acid Rain program under title IV and the various interstate-transport rulemakings as evidence of the viability of cap-and-trade programs for the utility power sector. 80 FR 64696-97. But recognizing “the long history of trading” under title IV and CAA section 110(a)(2)(D)(i)(I) to demonstrate the “achievability” of the “performance rates” in the CPP does not clarify the interpretive question the Agency faces under CAA section 111(a)(1)—i.e., what is the “best system of emission reduction” that can be applied to an affected source? To the contrary, Congress expressly established the cap-and-trade program under title IV, 42 U.S.C. 7651-7651o, and expressly authorized the use of “marketable permits” to implement ambient air quality standards under CAA section 110, id. at § 7410(a)(2)(A). We think it unlikely that Congress would have silently authorized the Agency to point to trading in order to justify generation-shifting as a “system of emission reduction.” 21

    21 Even the cap-and-trade program promulgated in the since-vacated Clean Air Mercury Rule, was “based on control technology available” for installation at individual existing sources. 70 FR 28617. It was not predicated on a BSER that encompassed measures that could not be applied at or to a particular source.

    Therefore, the EPA proposes that the BSER be limited to measures that physically or operationally can be applied to or at the source itself to reduce its emissions. Generation shifting—which accounts for a significant percentage of the emissions reductions projected in the CPP and without which individual sources could not meet the CPP's requirements—fails to comply with this limitation. Accordingly, the EPA proposes to repeal the CPP.

    E. Broader Policy Concerns

    Finally, the EPA's proposed interpretation is more consistent with certain broader policy concerns of the Agency and stakeholders. Those policy concerns are discussed below, and the EPA invites comment generally on the policy implications of the legal interpretation proposed in this action. The EPA notes that States, the regulated community, and other commenters identified potentially serious economic and political implications arising from the CPP's reliance on measures that extend beyond those that can be applied at and to a particular, individual source, such as generation shifting, which in turn raised questions as to whether the interpretations underlying the CPP violated the “clear statement” rule. See Util. Air Regulatory Grp. v. EPA, 134 S. Ct. 2427, 2444 (2014) (quoting FDA v. Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corp., 529 U.S. 120, 160 (2000)) (holding that, under certain circumstances, an interpretation that would have “vast `economic and political significance' ” requires a clear statement from Congress assigning the agency that authority). The EPA seeks comment on whether the interpretation proposed today, by substantially diminishing the potential economic and political consequences of any future regulation of CO2 emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired EGUs, has the advantage of not implicating this doctrine, in that it would avoid potentially transformative economic, policy, and political significance in the absence of a clear Congressional statement of intent to confer such authority on the Agency.

    In addition, while the EPA is authorized to regulate emissions from sources in the power sector and to consider the impact of its standards on the generation mix in setting standards to avoid negative energy impacts, regulation of the nation's generation mix itself is not within the Agency's authority. Regulation of the energy sector qua energy sector is generally undertaken by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and states, depending on which markets are being regulated. The EPA recognizes that Part II of the Federal Power Act (sections 201-223 (16 U.S.C. 824-824w)) establishes long-recognized regulatory authority for the FERC over electric utilities engaged in interstate commerce, including wholesale sales, transmission of electric energy in interstate commerce, and reliability. Moreover, section 310 of the CAA, 42 U.S.C. 7610(a), states that the Act “shall not be construed as superseding or limiting the authorities and responsibilities, under any other provision of law, of the Administrator or any other Federal officer, department, or agency.” The EPA solicits comment on whether the CPP exceeded the EPA's proper role and authority in this regard and whether the Agency's proposed reading in this notice, which limits the BSER to measures that can be applied to or at individual sources, would ensure that CAA section 111 has not been construed in a way that supersedes or limits the authorities and responsibilities of the FERC or that infringes upon the roles of the states.

    F. Proposed Rescission of Legal Memorandum

    As part of this action, the EPA is also proposing to rescind the documents in the CPP docket titled “Legal Memorandum for Proposed Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Electric Utility Generating Units” (in the docket for the proposed rule) and “Legal Memorandum Accompanying Clean Power Plan for Certain Issues” (a supplementary document in the docket for the final rule), to the extent those memoranda are inconsistent with the statutory interpretation that the EPA has proposed in this notice. The EPA is proposing to rescind these documents because, as is evident from the discussion above, they are in large part and in fundamental premise inconsistent with the statutory interpretation proposed here.

    Specifically, significant portions of the documents are devoted to arguing that the BSER on which performance standards under CAA section 111(d) is based can encompass measures other than physical or operational changes taken at the level of and applicable to an individual source. The point of departure for this interpretation is a perceived ambiguity in the word “system” within the phrase “best system of emissions reduction.” For the reasons stated above, the EPA is proposing to determine that, in full consideration of the statutory text and context, the legislative history, the Agency's historical practice under CAA section 111(d), and certain policy consequences of the statutory interpretation underlying the CPP, the best reading of the statute is that the BSER does not encompass the types of measures that constitute the second and third “building block” of the CPP. To the extent that the statutory interpretation embodied in the legal memoranda contradicts or is otherwise inconsistent with the interpretation proposed in this action, the EPA intends that the interpretation proposed here, to the extent it is finalized, shall supersede the interpretation in the memoranda. The EPA welcomes comment on this proposed interpretation.

    Further, other significant portions of the memoranda, especially the supplemental one, are concerned with defending particular aspects of the CPP's constituent “building blocks.” For the reasons stated above, the EPA is proposing to determine that the second and third “building blocks” exceed the Agency's authority under the statute, and, in accord with the Agency's position when it issued the CPP, that the first “building block” cannot stand on its own in the form in which it was issued. The two legal memoranda are therefore in material part either inconsistent with this proposal or rendered moot by it.

    Accordingly, to the extent that the EPA finalizes its statutory interpretation as proposed in this notice, the Agency proposes to rescind the documents to the extent they are inconsistent with the finalized positions. The EPA is intending to issue an ANPRM in the near future to solicit comment on the existing EGUs. Other issues discussed in the memoranda may be relevant to such a potential rulemaking, and the EPA's position with regard to those issues will be determined in the course of any such rulemaking, as required and appropriate.

    G. Conclusion

    For these reasons discussed above, the EPA is proposing that the BSER must be something that physically or operationally changes the source itself, and that is taken at or applied to individual, particular sources. Generation shifting—which accounts for a significant percentage of the emissions reductions projected in the CPP and without which sources could not meet the CPP's requirements and state plans could not be approved—fails to comply with this limitation. As explained in the CPP and the accompanying Legal Memorandum, generation shifting is accomplished through actions that owners or operators take on behalf of an affected source that might lead only indirectly to emissions reductions from the source. For example, owners or operators were expected to purchase power from qualifying lower-emitting generators or invest in lower-emitting generation, or purchase emissions credits. See 80 FR 64796-97 (building block 2); id. at 64804-06 (building block 3); and Legal Memorandum, 137-48. But none of these options involves a physical or operational change applicable to the source itself. Accordingly, the EPA proposes to repeal the CPP and supersede the legal interpretations presented in it and the accompanying Legal Memorandum.

    IV. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

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

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

    This proposed action is an economically significant regulatory action that was submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. Any changes made in response to OMB recommendations have been documented in the docket. The EPA prepared an analysis of the avoided compliance costs and forgone benefits associated with this action in the analysis years of 2020, 2025, and 2030. This analysis, which is contained in the Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) for this rulemaking is consistent with Executive Order 12866 and is available in the docket.

    We present various preliminary approaches to assess the regulatory impacts of the CPP repeal proposal. The analysis underscores the substantial uncertainties associated with the possible benefits and costs of CPP implementation, and, therefore, the preliminary repeal being offered at this time.22 Due to these uncertainties, the EPA requests comments on the avoided compliance costs, forgone benefits, modeling assumptions, uncertainties, and other relevant matters related to the development of the RIA for this rulemaking. This RIA uses two quantitative approaches to analyze the effects of the CPP in order to present information on the potential effects of the proposed repeal of the CPP. The first approach involves a modest reworking of the 2015 CPP RIA to increase transparency and illuminate the uncertainties associated with assessing benefits and costs of the CPP, as reflected in the 2015 analysis, as well as analyzing the potential effects of the CPP repeal. More specifically, this analysis increases transparency of the 2015 CPP analysis by presenting the energy efficiency cost savings as a benefit rather than a cost reduction and provides a bridge to future analyses that the agency is committed to performing. The current analysis also provides alternative approaches for examining the forgone benefits, including more clearly distinguishing the direct benefits from the co-benefits and exploring alternative ways to illustrate the impacts on the total net benefits of the uncertainty in health co-benefits at various PM2.5 cutpoints. This approach shifts the focus to the domestic (rather than global) social cost of carbon, and employs both 3 percent and 7 percent discount rates. Finally, we consider how changing market conditions and technologies may have affected future actions that may have been undertaken by states to comply with the CPP and how these changes may affect the potential benefits and costs of the CPP repeal.

    22 The EPA plans to conduct a more robust analysis before any final action is taken by the agency and provide an opportunity for the public to comment on the re-analysis. The EPA also plans to carry forward the approach that underscores the uncertainty associated with any agency action of this magnitude, especially in actions where discretion is afforded to State governments.

    The second approach uses the U.S. Energy Information Administration's (EIA) 2017 Annual Energy Outlook (AEO) projections to present a series of observations on recent power sector trends and produce alternative estimates of the forgone benefits and avoided compliance costs arising from the proposed repeal of the CPP. We also provide a review of recent studies of the CPP's projected costs and CO2 emission reductions performed by non-governmental institutions in order to provide a broader understanding of the uncertainties associated with the proposed repeal of the CPP.

    The RIA presents several different estimates of avoided compliance costs using various accounting frameworks. A first set of avoided compliance costs is based upon estimates presented in the 2015 Final CPP RIA, and counts savings from energy efficiency programs as a benefit of the rule, not as a cost-savings. A second set of avoided compliance costs is based upon a comparison of the AEO2017 Reference Case (CPP) and the AEO2017 No CPP Case. Here, the accounting framework treats the value of reduced electricity demand from demand-side energy efficiency programs as a cost credit (or negative cost). However, the EPA was unable to approximate the value of energy cost savings attributable to the demand-side energy efficiency measures using the AEO2017-based information. Because the EPA could not make this adjustment to the benefits and costs estimates using the AEO2017 information, the 2015 CPP RIA-based and AEO2017-based benefit and cost estimates cannot be directly compared with each other.

    We estimate the forgone climate benefits from this proposed rulemaking using a measure of the domestic social cost of carbon (SC-CO2), using estimates of forgone CO2 emission reductions from both the 2015 RIA and the AEO2017 cases. The SC-CO2 is a metric that estimates the monetary value of impacts associated with marginal changes in CO2 emissions in a given year. The SC-CO2 estimates used in this RIA focus on the direct impacts of climate change that are anticipated to occur within U.S. borders. As mentioned earlier, the EPA approximated the value of energy cost savings from the reduced demand attributable to the demand-side energy efficiency measures and this value is counted as a forgone benefit. Also, under this proposed repeal, the CPP would no longer reduce emissions of certain precursor pollutants (e.g., SO2, NOX, and directly emitted particles), which in turn would no longer lower ambient concentrations of PM2.5 and ozone. The RIA presents the estimated forgone health co-benefits associated with the projected changes in ambient air quality under the CPP. We estimate the forgone benefits using three alternative assumptions regarding the risk of PM-related premature death.

    The first approach calculates PM-related premature deaths at all levels of PM2.5. We then present two alternative approaches: (a) Forgone PM2.5 co-benefits fall to zero in areas whose model-predicted air quality is at or below the annual average PM2.5 NAAQS of 12 µg/m3 in the year 2025; and (b) forgone PM2.5 co-benefits fall to zero the below the LML in the epidemiological studies used to derive the concentration response function (8 and 5.8 µg/m3). To calculate the forgone co-benefits for this proposed rule, we applied a benefit-per-ton estimate corresponding to broad regions of the U.S. and that is based upon an emissions reduction scenario from the 2014 CPP proposal to the corresponding forgone emission reductions. As the benefit-per-ton estimates are based on a scenario that does not match the forgone emission reductions in this rulemaking, the estimates may over- or under-state the value of the forgone PM2.5 and ozone-related benefits. To the extent feasible, the EPA intends to perform full-scale photochemical air quality modeling to inform subsequent CPP-related regulatory analyses. Additionally, as part of a project now underway, the EPA is systematically evaluating the uncertainty associated with its technique for generating and applying this reduced-form technique for quantifying benefits, with the goal of better understanding the suitability of this and comparable approaches to estimating the health impacts of criteria pollutant emissions changes. The EPA will make drafts of these analysis available to the public at the time of peer review, consistent with OMB's Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review.

    The co-benefit analysis draws upon estimates of forgone SO2 and NOX emission reductions from both the 2015 RIA and the AEO2017 cases. As the RIA analyzes costs and benefits applying a variety of different methods and discount rates, there is a relatively large number of results.

    In the decision-making process, because, in part, of the interactions mentioned below, it is useful to consider the benefits due to reductions in the target pollutant relative to the costs, and whether alternative regulatory designs can achieve reductions in the targeted pollutants and/or the other affected pollutants more cost effectively. The EPA believes that this may be an appropriate way to evaluate this and future regulatory actions, and presents this information as part of its decision-making process.23 Therefore, in Tables 1 and 2 we present a comparison of the forgone benefits from the targeted pollutant—CO2—(the costs of this proposed rule) with the avoided compliance cost (the benefits of this proposed rule).24

    23 Cf. Transcript of Oral Argument at 64:1-6, Michigan v. EPA, 135 Sup. Ct. 2699 (2015) (No. 14-46) (statement of Roberts, C.J.) (“[I]t's a good thing if your regulation also benefits in other ways. But when it's such a disproportion, you begin to wonder whether it's an illegitimate way of avoiding the different—quite different limitations on EPA that apply in the criteria program.”).

    24 Excluded from this comparison are the forgone benefits from the SO2 and NOX emission reductions that were also projected to accompany the CO2 reductions. However, had those SO2 and NOX reductions been achieved through other means, then they would have been represented in the baseline for this proposed repeal (as well as for the 2015 Final CPP), which would have affected the estimated costs and benefits of controlling CO2 emissions alone.

    Regulating pollutants jointly can promote a more efficient outcome in pollution control management. However, in practice regulations are promulgated sequentially and therefore, the benefit-cost analyses supporting those regulations are also performed sequentially. The potential for interaction between regulations suggests that their sequencing may affect the realized efficiency of their design and the estimated net benefits for each regulation. To note, when considering whether a regulatory action is a potential welfare improvement it is necessary to consider all impacts of the action. The EPA requests comment on the extent that the EPA should rely on consideration of the benefits due to reductions in the target pollutant relative to the costs in the decision-making process.

    Table 1—Avoided Compliance Costs, Forgone Domestic Climate Benefits, Forgone Demand-Side Energy Efficiency Benefits, and Net Benefits of Repeal Associated With Targeted Pollutant (Billions of 2011$) Year Discount
  • rate
  • (%)
  • Avoided
  • compliance
  • costs
  • Forgone
  • domestic
  • climate
  • benefits
  • Forgone
  • demand-side
  • energy
  • efficiency
  • benefits
  • Net benefits
  • associated
  • with targeted
  • pollutant
  • Rate-Based 2020 3 $3.7 $0.4 $1.2 $2.1 7 4.2 0.1 1.2 2.9 2025 3 10.2 1.4 9.2 (0.4) 7 14.1 0.2 9.2 4.7 2030 3 27.2 2.7 18.8 5.7 7 33.3 0.5 18.8 14.0 Mass-Based 2020 3 2.6 0.4 1.2 1.0 7 3.1 0.1 1.2 1.8 2025 3 13.0 1.6 10.0 1.4 7 16.9 0.3 10.0 6.6 2030 3 24.5 2.7 19.3 2.5 7 30.6 0.5 19.3 10.8 Note: Estimates are rounded to one decimal point and may not sum due to independent rounding.
    Table 2—Avoided Compliance Costs, Forgone Domestic Climate Benefits, and Net Benefits of Repeal Associated With Targeted Pollutant, Based on the 2017 Annual Energy Outlook (Billions of 2011$) Year Discount
  • rate
  • (%)
  • Avoided
  • compliance
  • costs
  • Forgone
  • domestic
  • climate
  • benefits
  • Net benefits
  • associated
  • with targeted
  • pollutant
  • 2020 3 ($0.3) $0.1 ($0.4) 7 0.0 (0.3) 2025 3 14.5 1.3 13.2 7 0.2 14.3 2030 3 14.4 2.5 11.9 7 0.4 14.0 Note: Estimates are rounded to one decimal point and may not sum due to independent rounding.

    We also present the full suite of avoided compliance cost, forgone benefit, and net benefit results discussed in the RIA in Tables 3 through 5. Table 3 presents results for the rate-based illustrative plan scenario from the 2015 CPP RIA. Table 4 presents results for the mass-based illustrative plan scenario from the 2015 CPP RIA. Table 5 presents results based upon the EPA's analysis of the AEO2017 Reference Case (CPP) and the AEO2017 No CPP Case. The tables report two estimates of forgone benefits. One value represents the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Krewski et al. (2009) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Bell et al. (2004) risk coefficient. The other value represents the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Lepeule et al. (2012) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Levy et al. (2005) risk coefficient. Note again that, due to different accounting frameworks, benefits and costs presented in the EPA 2015 CPP RIA-based Tables 1 and 2 are not directly comparable to the AEO2017-based benefits and costs presented in Table 3.

    Table 3—Monetized Forgone Benefits, Avoided Compliance Costs, and Net Benefits Based on Rate-Based Approach From 2015 CPP RIA (Billions of 2011$) Year Discount rate
  • (%)
  • Benefit
  • of repeal:
  • avoided costs
  • Cost of repeal: forgone benefits A B Net benefits of repeal A B
    Forgone Health Co-Benefits (Full Range of Ambient PM 2.5 Concentrations) 2020 3 $3.7 $2.3 $3.4 $0.3 $1.4 7 4.2 1.9 3.0 1.2 2.3 2025 3 10.2 18.0 28.4 (18.1) (7.8) 7 14.1 16.2 25.6 (11.5) (2.0) 2030 3 27.2 35.8 55.5 (28.3) (8.6) 7 33.3 32.2 50.2 (16.9) 1.1 Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below LML) 2020 3 3.7 2.2 2.8 0.9 1.5 7 4.2 1.9 2.4 1.8 2.3 2025 3 10.2 17.5 20.7 (10.5) (7.3) 7 14.1 15.7 18.7 (4.6) (1.6) 2030 3 27.2 34.8 40.7 (13.5) (7.6) 7 33.3 31.3 36.9 (3.6) 2.0 Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below NAAQS) 2020 3 3.7 1.7 2.1 1.5 2.0 7 4.2 1.4 1.8 2.4 2.8 2025 3 10.2 11.4 13.3 (3.1) (1.1) 7 14.1 10.2 12.1 2.1 4.0 2030 3 27.2 23.0 26.5 0.7 4.2 7 33.3 20.7 24.1 9.2 12.7 Note: Estimates are rounded to one decimal point and may not sum due to independent rounding. Forgone benefits include forgone climate, energy efficiency, and air quality benefits. Estimate A is based upon the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Krewski et al. (2009) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Bell et al. (2004) risk coefficient. Estimate B is based on the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Lepeule et al. (2012) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Levy et al. (2005) risk coefficient.
    Table 4—Monetized Forgone Benefits, Avoided Compliance Costs, and Net Benefits Based on Mass-Based Approach From 2015 CPP RIA (Billions of 2011$) Year Discount rate
  • (%)
  • Benefit
  • of repeal:
  • avoided costs
  • Cost of repeal: forgone benefits A B Net benefits of repeal A B
    Forgone Health Co-Benefits (Full Range of Ambient PM 2.5 Concentrations) 2020 3 $2.6 $3.6 $6.4 ($3.8) ($1.0) 7 3.1 3.1 5.6 (2.5) 0.0 2025 3 13.0 18.7 28.8 (15.8) (5.7) 7 16.9 16.7 26.0 (9.1) 0.2 2030 3 24.5 33.8 50.1 (25.7) (9.3) 7 30.6 30.4 45.5 (14.8) 0.2 Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below LML) 2020 3 2.6 3.5 4.4 (1.8) (0.9) 7 3.1 2.9 3.8 (0.7) 0.2 2025 3 13.0 18.2 21.6 (8.5) (5.2) 7 16.9 16.3 19.5 (2.5) 0.7 2030 3 24.5 32.9 38.1 (13.7) (8.4) 7 30.6 29.7 34.7 (4.0) 0.9 Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below NAAQS) 2020 3 2.6 1.8 2.4 0.2 0.8 7 3.1 1.5 2.0 1.1 1.7 2025 3 13.0 12.4 14.6 (1.6) 0.6 7 16.9 11.1 13.2 3.7 5.9 2030 3 24.5 23.3 26.6 (2.1) 1.2 7 30.6 21.0 24.2 6.4 9.6 Note: Estimates are rounded to one decimal point and may not sum due to independent rounding. Forgone benefits include forgone climate, energy efficiency, and air quality benefits. Estimate A is based upon the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Krewski et al. (2009) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Bell et al. (2004) risk coefficient. Estimate B is based on the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Lepeule et al. (2012) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Levy et al. (2005) risk coefficient.
    Table 5—Monetized Forgone Benefits, Avoided Compliance Costs, and Net Benefits, Based on EPA Analysis of AEO2017 (Billions of 2011$) Year Discount rate
  • (%)
  • Benefit
  • of repeal:
  • avoided costs
  • Cost of repeal: forgone benefits A B Net benefits of repeal A B
    Forgone Health Co-Benefits (Full Range of Ambient PM 2.5 Concentrations) 2020 3 ($0.3) ($0.5) ($0.2) ($0.2) $0.1 7 (0.5) (0.2) (0.1) 0.1 2025 3 14.5 9.0 19.6 (5.0) 5.5 7 7.2 16.9 (2.3) 7.3 2030 3 14.4 20.6 44.9 (30.6) (6.3) 7 16.8 39.0 (24.6) (2.5) Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below LML) 2020 3 (0.3) (0.2) (0.1) (0.2) (0.2) 7 (0.2) (0.2) (0.2) (0.1) 2025 3 14.5 8.4 11.5 3.1 6.1 7 6.7 9.6 5.0 7.8 2030 3 14.4 19.3 25.8 (11.4) (4.9) 7 15.6 21.7 (7.3) (1.3) Forgone Health Co-Benefits (PM 2.5 Benefits Fall to Zero Below NAAQS) 2020 3 (0.3) 0.1 0.2 (0.5) (0.5) 7 0.0 0.1 (0.5) (0.4) 2025 3 14.5 2.0 3.6 10.9 12.6 7 0.9 2.5 12.0 13.7 2030 3 14.4 4.0 7.3 7.1 10.4 7 1.8 5.0 9.4 12.6 Note: Estimates are rounded to one decimal point and may not sum due to independent rounding. Forgone benefits include forgone climate and air quality benefits. Estimate A is based upon the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Krewski et al. (2009) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Bell et al. (2004) risk coefficient. Estimate B is based on the sum of the forgone CO2, energy efficiency, PM2.5 co-benefits calculated using the Lepeule et al. (2012) risk coefficient and ozone co-benefits calculated using the Levy et al. (2005) risk coefficient.

    In evaluating the impacts of the proposed action, the RIA discusses a number of uncertainties. The RIA quantitatively examines uncertainties in the approaches that states and affected EGUs may have taken under the final CPP to accomplish state emission performance goals, in estimates of the avoided compliance costs, and in estimates of forgone climate, energy efficiency, and air quality benefits. Other types of uncertainties are acknowledged but remain unquantified. In addition, the EPA plans to perform updated modeling and analysis of avoided compliance costs, forgone benefits, and other impacts, which will be made available for public comment before any action that relates to the CPP is finalized. To the extent feasible, the EPA intends to perform full-scale gridded photochemical air quality modeling to support the air quality benefits assessment informing subsequent regulatory analyses of CPP-related actions. Such model predictions would supply the data needed to: (1) Quantify the PM2.5 and ozone-related impacts of the policy case; (2) perform the full suite of sensitivity analyses summarized above, particularly the concentration cut-point assessment. The EPA further commits to characterizing the uncertainty associated with applying benefit-per-ton estimates by comparing the EPA's approach with other reduced-form techniques found in the literature. All of these analyses will be available for peer review consistent with the requirements of OMB's Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review within 6 months.

    B. Executive Order 13771: Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs

    This proposed rule is expected to be an EO 13771 deregulatory action. Details on the estimated cost savings of this proposed rule can be found in the rule's RIA.

    C. Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA)

    This proposed rule does not impose an information collection burden under the PRA.

    D. 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. Emission guidelines established under CAA section 111(d) do not impose any requirements on regulated entities and, thus, will not have a significant economic impact upon a substantial number of small entities. After emission guidelines are promulgated, states establish emission standards on existing sources, and it is those requirements that could potentially impact small entities. This proposed action will not impose any requirements on small entities. As a result, this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the RFA.

    Our analysis in the accompanying RIA is consistent with the analysis of the analogous situation arising when the EPA establishes NAAQS, which do not impose any requirements on regulated entities. As with the description in the RIA, any impact of a NAAQS on small entities would only arise when states take subsequent action to maintain and/or achieve the NAAQS through their state implementation plans. See American Trucking Assoc. v. EPA, 175 F.3d 1029, 1043-45 (D.C. Cir. 1999) (NAAQS do not have significant impacts upon small entities because NAAQS themselves impose no regulations upon small entities).

    E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA)

    This proposed action does not contain an unfunded mandate of $100 million or more as described in UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1531-1538, and does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments. This action imposes no enforceable duty on any state, local, or tribal governments or the private sector.

    F. Executive Order 13132: Federalism

    The EPA proposes to conclude that the CPP would have negative federalism implications and that this proposed repeal of the CPP would restore the status quo ante. The EPA has concluded that this proposed action does not have negative federalism implications. It will not have substantial negative 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.

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

    This action does not have tribal implications as specified in Executive Order 13175. It will not have substantial direct effects on tribal governments, on the relationship between the federal government and Indian tribes, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the federal government and Indian tribes, as specified in Executive Order 13175. Thus, Executive Order 13175 does not apply to the action.

    Consistent with the EPA Policy on Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribes, the EPA will engage in consultation with tribal officials during the development of this action.

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

    This action is subject to Executive Order 13045 because it is an economically significant regulatory action as defined by Executive Order 12866. The CPP was anticipated to lower ambient concentrations of PM2.5 and ozone, and some of the benefits of reducing these pollutants would have accrued to children. As previously discussed above in Section IV.A on Executive Order 12866, and as discussed in detail in the RIA that accompanies this document of proposed rulemaking, recent changes in the electric power sector have affected expectations about the impact of the CPP since its supporting analysis was conducted in 2015. In general, current expectations about future emissions of pollution from the electric power sector without the CPP are lower than they were at the time the final CPP was analyzed. Relative to its 2015 projections of the electric power sector, the EIA's 2017 AEO forecasts lower future emissions levels without the CPP. Specifically, in AEO2017, the forecast for NOx emissions from the electric power sector in 2030 without the CPP is approximately 27 percent lower than the analogous forecast in AEO2015. The forecast for SO2 emissions from the electric power sector in 2030 is 6 percent lower in AEO2017 than in AEO2015. Therefore, there is significant uncertainty as to the current applicability of results from the 2015 CPP analysis, including the assessment human health benefits.

    Furthermore, the proposed action does not affect the level of public health and environmental protection already being provided by existing NAAQS and other mechanisms in the CAA. This proposed action does not affect applicable local, state, or federal permitting or air quality management programs that will continue to address areas with degraded air quality and maintain the air quality in areas meeting current standards. Areas that need to reduce criteria air pollution to meet the NAAQS will still need to rely on control strategies to reduce emissions. To the extent that states use other mechanisms in order to comply with the NAAQS, and still achieve the criteria pollution reductions that would have occurred under the CPP, this proposed rescission will not have a disproportionate adverse effect on children's health.

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

    This action, which is a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866, is likely to have a significant effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. In the RIA for the CPP, we estimated that the CPP could have a 1- to 2-percent impact on retail electricity prices on average across the U.S. in 2025 and a 22- to 23-percent reduction in coal-fired electricity generation. The EPA also estimated that the utility power sector delivered natural gas prices would increase by up to 2.5 percent in 2030. A repeal of the CPP would directionally have the opposite impact.

    The energy impacts the EPA estimates from the proposed rule may be under- or over-estimates of the true energy impacts associated with the proposed repeal of the CPP. Some states are likely to pursue emissions reduction strategies independent of EPA action. Additionally, the compliance cost estimates were based upon information available in 2015, so important economic and technical factors that influence the estimates may have changed since 2015 or may change in the future. However, these estimates of energy impacts associated with the proposed action are currently the best estimates available.

    J. National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA)

    This rulemaking does not involve technical standards.

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

    The EPA believes that this proposed action is unlikely to have disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority populations, low-income populations and/or indigenous peoples as specified in Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994). The CPP anticipated reductions in CO2 emissions, as well as lower concentrations of PM2.5 and ozone due to changes in EGU emissions. The EPA conducted a proximity analysis for the CPP and identified that low-income and minority communities located in proximity to EGUs may have experienced an improvement in air quality as a result of the emissions reductions. However, the EPA did not address the potential distribution of compliance costs associated with the CPP.

    The RIA that accompanies this document of proposed rulemaking discusses how the potential impacts of this proposed action might be distributed across the population, as the impacts are not expected to be experienced uniformly by different individuals, communities, or industry sectors.

    The distribution of avoided compliance costs associated with this action depends on how the degree to which costs would have been passed through to consumers. As discussed in the RIA, this proposal is expected to result in lower electricity prices. Low-income households typically spend a greater share of their household income on energy, and to the extent that this action reduces energy costs, those low-income households will experience lower energy bills. This result is complicated by expectations regarding how energy efficiency programs may have been adopted under the CPP. However, the EPA does not know how states would have implemented those programs and, therefore, the impact of those program on low-income households. The overall distribution of the avoided compliance costs associated with this action is uncertain, but may result in lower household energy bills for low-income households.

    With respect to the forgone benefits associated with this action, the EPA conducted a proximity analysis for the CPP which showed a higher percentage of low-income and minority households living in proximity to EGUs that may have reduced emissions under the CPP. These communities may experience forgone benefits as a result of this action. However, any changes in ambient air quality depends on stack height, atmospheric conditions, and dispersion patterns. Therefore, the distribution of forgone benefits is highly uncertain. Also expected, as a result of the CPP, were shifts in regional workforces, particularly in the electricity, coal, and natural gas sectors. While employment effects are not experienced uniformly across the population and may be offset by new opportunities in different sectors, localized impacts could have adversely affected individuals and their communities. Workers losing jobs in regions or occupations with weak labor markets would have been most vulnerable. With limited re-employment opportunities, or if new employment offered lower earnings, then unemployed workers could face extended periods without work, or permanently reduced future earnings. In addition, past research has suggested that involuntary job loss may increase risks to health, of substance abuse, and even of mortality. These adverse impacts may be avoided with the proposed repeal of the CPP.

    V. Statutory Authority

    The statutory authority for this action is provided by sections 111, 301, 302, and 307(d)(1)(V) of the CAA, as amended (42 U.S.C. 7411, 7601, 7602, 7607(d)(1)(V)). This action is also subject to section 307(d) of the CAA (42 U.S.C. 7607(d)).

    Dated: October 10, 2017. E. Scott Pruitt, Administrator.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22349 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    82 198 Monday, October 16, 2017 Notices DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service [Docket No. APHIS-2016-0053] Notice of Determination of the Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza and Newcastle Disease Status of Japan AGENCY:

    Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    We are advising the public that we are recognizing Japan as being free of highly pathogenic avian influenza and Newcastle disease. This recognition is based on a risk evaluation we prepared and made available for public review and comment.

    DATES:

    This change of disease status will be recognized on October 16, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dr. Kelly Rhodes, Senior Staff Veterinarian, Regionalization Evaluation Services, National Import Export Services, VS, APHIS, USDA, 4700 River Road Unit 38, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231; [email protected]; (301) 851-3315.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The regulations in 9 CFR part 94 (referred to below as the regulations) govern the importation of certain animals and animal products into the United States in order to prevent the introduction of various animal diseases, including highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) and Newcastle disease. Within part 94, § 94.6 contains requirements governing the importation of carcasses, meat, parts or products of carcasses, and eggs (other than hatching eggs) of poultry, game birds, or other birds from regions where HPAI and Newcastle disease is considered to exist.

    In accordance with § 94.6(a)(1)(i), the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) maintains a list of regions in which Newcastle disease is not considered to exist. Paragraph (a)(1)(ii) states that APHIS will add a region to this list after it conducts an evaluation of the region and finds that Newcastle disease is not likely to be present in its commercial bird or poultry populations.

    In accordance with § 94.6(a)(2)(i), APHIS maintains a list of regions in which HPAI is considered to exist. Paragraph (a)(2)(ii) states that APHIS will remove a region from this list only after it conducts an evaluation of the region and finds that HPAI is not likely to be present in its commercial bird or poultry populations.

    In 9 CFR part 92, § 92.2 contains requirements for requesting the recognition of the animal health status of a region (as well as for the approval of the export of a particular type of animal or animal product to the United States from a foreign region). If, after review and evaluation of the information submitted in support of the request, APHIS believes the request can be safely granted, APHIS will make its evaluation available for public comment through a document published in the Federal Register.

    In accordance with that process, we published a notice 1 in the Federal Register on June 30, 2017 (82 FR 29822-29823, Docket No. APHIS-2016-0053) announcing the availability for review and comment of our evaluation of the HPAI and Newcastle disease status of Japan. Based on this evaluation, we determined that Japan is free of both HPAI and Newcastle disease.

    1 To view the notice, risk evaluation, environmental assessment, finding of no significant impact, and the comments we received, go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2016-0053.

    We solicited comments on the notice for 30 days ending July 31, 2017. We received two comments by that date, both from private citizens. One commenter supported the action. The second commenter stated that our assessment did not seem to include the most recent occurrence of HPAI in Japan and requested that we explain why we made the determination that no HPAI has occurred when HPAI was reported in Japan in early 2017.

    The risk evaluation that we made available for public review and comment explained that seven outbreaks of HPAI occurred in November and December of 2016, followed by five outbreaks from January through May 2017. The risk evaluation examined the biosecurity and surveillance measures that Japan employs to prevent and detect HPAI outbreaks, respectively. There was no evidence that HPAI virus is circulating in domestic poultry in Japan. Each HPAI outbreak appeared to be a point source introduction from infected wild birds, with no other epidemiological connections. These findings support our conclusion that Japan is free of HPAI. Although infection in migratory wild birds presents an ongoing risk of introduction, Japan has effective systems in place to detect and investigate potential HPAI outbreaks and a highly successful rapid response scheme.

    Based on the evaluation and the reasons given in this document in response to comments, we are recognizing Japan as being free of HPAI and Newcastle disease and will add Japan to the Web-based list of regions in which Newcastle disease is not considered to exist and remove Japan from the web-based list of regions in which HPAI is considered to exist. These lists are available on the APHIS Web site at https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/ourfocus/animalhealth/animal-and-animal-product-import-information/ct_animal_disease_status.

    An environmental assessment (EA) and finding of no significant impact (FONSI) have been prepared for this action. Based on the FONSI, the Administrator of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that an environmental impact statement need not be prepared.

    The EA and FONSI were prepared in accordance with: (1) The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.), (2) regulations of the Council on Environmental Quality for implementing the procedural provisions of NEPA (40 CFR parts 1500-1508), (3) USDA regulations implementing NEPA (7 CFR part 1b), and (4) APHIS' NEPA Implementing Procedures (7 CFR part 372).

    The EA and FONSI may be viewed on the Regulations.gov Web site (see footnote 1). Copies of the EA and FONSI are also available for public inspection at USDA, Room 1141, South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC, between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. Persons wishing to inspect copies are requested to call ahead on (202) 799-7039 to facilitate entry into the reading room. In addition, copies may be obtained by writing to the individual listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

    Authority:

    7 U.S.C. 450, 7701-7772, 7781-7786, and 8301-8317; 21 U.S.C. 136 and 136a; 31 U.S.C. 9701; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.4.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 11th day of October 2017. Michael C. Gregoire, Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22382 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3410-34-P
    COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS Notice of Public Meetings of the Kansas Advisory Committee to Discuss Next Steps in the Committee's Study of Civil Rights and School Funding in Kansas AGENCY:

    U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

    ACTION:

    Announcement of meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    Notice is hereby given, pursuant to the provisions of the rules and regulations of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (Commission) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act that the Kansas Advisory Committee (Committee) will hold meetings on Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 3 p.m. Central time. The Committee will continue discussion and preparations to hold a public hearing as part of their current study on civil rights and school funding in the state.

    DATES:

    The meeting will take place on Thursday, October 26, 2017 at 3 p.m. Central time.

    Public Call Information: • Thursday October 26, 2017: Dial: 800-263-8506, Conference ID: 5951050 FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Melissa Wojnaroski, DFO, at [email protected] or 312-353-8311.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Members of the public can listen to these discussions. These meetings are available to the public through the above call in numbers. Any interested member of the public may call this number and listen to the meeting. An open comment period will be provided to allow members of the public to make a statement as time allows. The conference call operator will ask callers to identify themselves, the organization they are affiliated with (if any), and an email address prior to placing callers into the conference room. Callers can expect to incur regular charges for calls they initiate over wireless lines, according to their wireless plan. The Commission will not refund any incurred charges. Callers will incur no charge for calls they initiate over land-line connections to the toll-free telephone number. Persons with hearing impairments may also follow the proceedings by first calling the Federal Relay Service at 1-800-977-8339 and providing the Service with the conference call number and conference ID number.

    Members of the public are also entitled to submit written comments; the comments must be received in the regional office within 30 days following the meeting. Written comments may be mailed to the Regional Programs Unit, U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, 55 W. Monroe St., Suite 410, Chicago, IL 60615. They may also be faxed to the Commission at (312) 353-8324, or emailed to Corrine Sanders at [email protected] Persons who desire additional information may contact the Regional Programs Unit at (312) 353-8311.

    Records generated from this meeting may be inspected and reproduced at the Regional Programs Unit Office, as they become available, both before and after the meeting. Records of the meeting will be available via www.facadatabase.gov under the Commission on Civil Rights, Kansas Advisory Committee link (http://www.facadatabase.gov/committee/meetings.aspx?cid=249). Click on “meeting details” and then “documents” to download. Persons interested in the work of this Committee are directed to the Commission's Web site, http://www.usccr.gov, or may contact the Regional Programs Unit at the above email or street address.

    Agenda Welcome and Roll Call Civil Rights in Kansas: School funding Future Plans and Actions Public Comment Adjournment Dated: October 10, 2017. David Mussatt, Supervisory Chief, Regional Programs Unit.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22265 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 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 August anniversary dates. In accordance with the Department's regulations, we are initiating those administrative reviews.

    DATES:

    Applicable October 16, 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 August 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 August 31, 2018.

    Period to be
  • reviewed
  • Antidumping Duty Proceedings India: Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products 4A-533-863 1/4/16-6/30/17 Atlantis International Services Company Ltd JSW Coated Products Limited JSW Steel Ltd Uttam Galva Steels (BVI) Limited Uttam Galva Steels Limited Uttam Galva Steels, Netherlands, B.V Uttam Value Steels Limited Malaysia: Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags A-557-813 8/1/16-7/31/17 Euro SME Sdn Bhd Mexico: Light-Walled Rectangular Pipe and Tube A-201-836 8/1/16-7/31/17 Maquilacero S.A. de C.V Perfiles y Herrajes LM, S.A. de C.V Productos Laminados de Monterrey S.A. de C.V Regiomontana de Perfiles y Tubos S.A. de C.V Republic of Korea: Large Power Transformers A-580-867 8/1/16-7/31/17 Hyundai Electric & Energy Systems Co., Ltd Hyundai Heavy Industries Co., Ltd ILJIN IIjin Electric Co., Ltd LSIS Co., Ltd Hyosung Corporation Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Certain Frozen Fish Fillets A-552-801 8/1/16-7/31/17 An Giang Agriculture and Foods Import-Export Joint Stock Company (also known as Afiex, An Giang Agriculture and Foods Import-Export Joint Stock Company, An Giang Agriculture and Food Import-Export Company, or An Giang Agriculture and Foods Import and Export Company) An Giang Fisheries Import and Export Joint Stock Company (also known as Agifish or AnGiang Fisheries Import and Export) An My Fish Joint Stock Company (also known as Anmyfish or Anmyfishco) An Phat Import-Export Seafood Co. Ltd. (also known as An Phat Seafood Co. Ltd.) An Phu Seafood Corporation (also known as ASEAFOOD or An Phu Seafood Corp.) Anvifish Joint Stock Company (also known as Anvifish or Anvifish Co., Ltd.) Asia Commerce Fisheries Joint Stock Company (also known as Acomfish JSC or Acomfish) Asia Pangasius Company Limited (also known as ASIA) Basa Joint Stock Company (BASACO) Ben Tre Aquaproduct Import and Export Joint Stock Company (also known as Bentre Aquaproduct or Aquatex Bentre) Bentre Forestry and Aquaproduct Import-Export Joint Stock Company (also known as Bentre Forestry and Aquaproduct Import and Export Joint Stock Company or Ben Tre Forestry and Aquaproduct Import-Export Company or Ben Tre Forestry Aquaproduct Import-Export Company or Ben Tre Frozen Aquaproduct Export Company or Faquimex) Bien Dong Seafood Company Ltd. (also known as Bien Dong, Bien Dong Seafood, Bien Dong Seafood Co., Ltd., or Biendong Seafood Limited Liabilty Company) Binh An Seafood Joint Stock Company (also known as Binh An or Binh An Seafood Joint Stock Co.) Binh Dinh Import Export Company (also known as Binh Dinh) Cadovimex II Seafood Import-Export and Processing Joint Stock Company (also known as Cadovimex II or Cadovimex II Seafood Import-Export) Cafatex Corporation (also known as Cafatex) Can Tho Animal Fishery Products Processing Export Enterprise (also known as Cafatex) Cantho Import-Export Seafood Joint Stock Company (also known as CASEAMEX, Can Tho Import-Export Seafood Joint Stock Company, Cantho Import-Export Joint Stock Company, or Can Tho Import-Export Joint Stock Company) C.P. Vietnam Corporation Cuu Long Fish Import-Export Corporation (also known as CL Panga Fish) Cuu Long Fish Joint Stock Company (also known as CL-Fish or CL-Fish Corp.) Da Nang Seaproducts Import-Export Corporation (also known as Da Nang or Da Nang Seaproducts Import/Export Corp.) Dai Thanh Seafoods Company Limited (also known as DATHACO or Dai Thanh Seafoods or Dai Thanh Seafoods Co., Ltd.) East Sea Seafoods LLC (also known as ESS LLC, ESS, ESS JVC, East Sea Seafoods Limited Liabiltiy Company, East Sea Seafoods Joint Venture Co., Ltd.) Europe Joint Stock Company (also known as Europe JSC) Fatifish Company Limited (also known as FATIFISH or FATIFISHCO) Go Dang An Hiep One Member Limited Company Go Dang Ben Tre One Member Limited Liability Company GODACO Seafood Joint Stock Company (also known as GODACO or GODACO Seafood J.S.C. or GODACO Seafood) Golden Quality Seafood Corporation (also known Golden Quality, GoldenQuality, or GoldenQuality Seafood Corporation) Green Farms Seafood Joint Stock Company (also know as Green Farms, GreenFarm SeaFoods Joint Stock Company or Green Farms Seafoods Joint Stock Company or Green Farms Seafood JSC) Hai Huong Seafood Joint Stock Company (also known as HHFish, HH Fish, or Hai Houng Seafood) Hiep Thanh Seafood Joint Stock Company (also known as Hiep Thanh or Hiep Thanh Seafood Joint Stock Co.) Hoa Phat Seafood Import-Export and Processing J.S.C. (also known as HOPAFISH or Hoa Phat Seafood Import-Export and Processing Joint Stock Company) Hoang Long Seafood Processing Company Limited (also known as HLS, Hoang Long Seafood, or Hoang Long Seafood Processing Co.,Ltd.) Hung Vuong—Mien Tay Aquaculture Corporation Hung Vuong—Sa Dec Co., Ltd Hung Vuong—Vinh Long Co., Ltd Hung Vuong Ben Tre Seafood Processing Company Limited (also known as HVBT Seafood Processing) Hung Vuong Corporation Hung Vuong Joint Stock Company Hung Vuong Mascato Company Limited Hung Vuong Seafood Joint Stock Company International Development & Investment Corporation (also known as IDI) Lian Heng Investment Co., Ltd. (also known as Lien Heng Investment or Lian Heng) Lian Heng Trading Co., Ltd. (also known as Lian Heng or Lian Heng Trading) Nam Phuong Seafood Co., Ltd. (also known as Nam Phuong or NAFISHCO or Nam Phuong Seafood or Nam PhuongSeafood Company Ltd.) Nam Viet Corporation (also known as NAVICO) Ngoc Ha Co., Ltd. Food Processing and Trading (also known as Ngoc Ha or Ngoc Ha Co., Ltd. Foods Processing and Trading) Nha Trang Seafoods, Inc. (also known as Nha Trang Seafoods-F89, Nha Trang Seafoods, or Nha Trang Seaproduct Company) NTACO Corporation (also known as NTACO or NTACO Corp.) NTSF Seafoods Joint Stock Company (also known as NTSF or NTSF Seafoods) Quang Minh Seafood Company Limited (also known as Quang Minh, Quang Minh Seafood Co., Ltd., or Quang Minh Seafood Co.) QVD Dong Thap Food Co., Ltd. (also known as Dong Thap or QVD DT) QVD Food Company, Ltd. (also known as QVD or QVD Aqucuture) Saigon-Mekong Fishery Co., Ltd. (also known as SAMEFICO or Saigon Mekong Fishery Co., Ltd.) Seafood Joint Stock Company No. 4 Branch Dongtam Fisheries Processing Company (also known as DOTASEAFOODCO or Seafood Joint Stock Company No. 4-Branch Dong Tam Fisheries Processing Company) Southern Fishery Industries Company, Ltd. (also known as South Vina, South Vina Co., Ltd., or Southern Fisheries Industries Company, Ltd.) Sunrise Corporation TG Fishery Holdings Corporation (also known as TG) Thanh Hung Co., Ltd. (also known as Thanh Hung Frozen Seafood Processing Import Export Co., Ltd. or Thanh Hung) Thien Ma Seafood Co., Ltd. (also known as THIMACO or Thien Ma or Thien Ma Seafood Company, Ltd. or Thien Ma Seafoods Co., Ltd.) Thuan An Production Trading and Service Co., Ltd. (also known as TAFISHCO, Thuan An Production Trading and Services Co., Ltd., or Thuan An Production & Trading Service Co., Ltd.) Thuan Hung Co., Ltd. (also known as THUFICO) To Chau Joint Stock Company (also known as TOCHAU) Van Duc Food Export Joint Stock Company Van Duc Tien Giang Food Export Company Viet Hai Seafood Company Limited (also known as Viet Hai or Vietnam Fish-One Co., Ltd. or Viet Hai Seafood Co. or Fish One) Viet Phu Foods and Fish Corporation (also known as Vietphu, Viet Phu, Viet Phu Food and Fish Corporation, or Viet Phu Food & Fish Corporation) Viet Phu Foods & Fish Co., Ltd Vinh Hoan Corporation (also known as Vinh Hoan or Ving Hoan Co.) Vinh Long Import-Export Company (also known as Vinh Long or Imex Cuu Long or Vinh Long Import/Export Company) Vinh Quang Fisheries Corporation (also known as Vinh Quang, Vinh Quang Fisheries Joint Stock Company, or Vinh Quang Fisheries Co.,Ltd.) Socialist Republic of Vietnam: Welded Stainless Pressure Pipe 5 A-552-816 7/1/16-6/30/17 Taiwan: Certain Steel Nails 6 A-583-854 7/1/16-6/30/17 Basso Industry Corporation The People's Republic of China: Certain Passenger Vehicle and Light Truck Tires A-570-016 8/1/16-7/31/17 Actyon Tyre Resources Co., Limited BC Tyre Group Limited Best Choice International Trade Co., Limited Chen Shin Tire & Rubber (China) Co., Ltd Cooper (Kunshan) Tire Co., Ltd Crown International Corporation Dynamic Tire Corp Federal Tire (Jiangxi), Ltd Hangzhou Yokohama Tire Co., Ltd Hankook Tire China Co., Ltd Hebei Tianrui Rubber Co., Ltd Highpoint Trading, Ltd Hong Kong Tiancheng Investment & Trading Co., Limited Hong Kong Tri-Ace Tire Co., Limited Hongtyre Goup Co Husky Tire Corp Hwa Fong Rubber (Hong Kong) Ltd Hwa Fong Rubber (Suzhou) Ltd Jiangsu Hankook Tire Co., Ltd Kenda Rubber (China) Co., Ltd Koryo International Industrial Limited Kumho Tire Co., Inc Mayrun Tyre (Hong Kong) Limited Qingdao Fullrun Tyre Corp. Ltd Qingdao Fullrun Tyre Tech Corp. Ltd Qingdao Nama Industrial Co., Ltd Qingdao Nexen Tire Corporation Qingdao Odyking Tyre Co., Ltd Qingdao Qianzhen Tyre Co., Ltd Qingdao Qihang Tyre Co., Ltd Qingdao Qizhou Rubber Co., Ltd Qingdao Sentury Tire Co., Ltd Sailun Jinyu Group (Hong Kong) Co., Limited Sailun Jinyu Group Co., Ltd Sailun Tire International Corp Seatex International Inc Seatex PTE. Ltd Shandgong Hongsheng Rubber Co. Ltd Shandong Anchi Tyres Co., Ltd Shandong Changfeng Tyres Co., Ltd Shandong Duratti Rubber Corporation Co. Ltd Shandong Guofeng Rubber Plastics Shandong Guofeng Rubber Plastics Co., Ltd Shandong Haohua Tire Co., Ltd Shandong Haolang Rubber Tire Co., Ltd Shandong Haolong Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong Hengyu Science & Technology Co., Ltd Shandong Jinyu Industrial Co., Ltd Shandong Linglong Tyre Co., Ltd Shandong Longyue Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong New Continent Tire Co., Ltd Shandong Province Sanli Tire Shandong Province Sanli Tire Manufactured Co., Ltd Shandong Shuangwang Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong Wanda Boto Tyre Co., Ltd Shandong Yongsheng Rubber Group Co., Ltd Shandong Zhongyi Rubber Co., Ltd Shengtai Group Co., Ltd Shifeng Juxing Tire Co., Ltd Shouguang Firemax Tyre Co., Ltd Southeast Mariner International Co., Ltd The Yokohama Rubber Company, Ltd Toyo Tire (Zhangjiagang) Co., Ltd Tyrechamp Group Co., Limited Winrun Tyre Co., Ltd Zhaoqing Junhong Co., Ltd The People's Republic of China: Hydroflurocarbon Blends and Components Thereof A-570-028 2/1/16-7/31/17 Arkema Daikin Advanced Fluorochemicals (Changsu) Co., Ltd Daikin Fluorochemicals (China) Co., Ltd Dongyang Weihua Refrigerants Co., Ltd Jinhua Yonghe Fluorochemical Co., Ltd Shandong Huaan New Material Co., Ltd Sinochem Environmental Protection Chemicals (Taicang) Co., Ltd T.T. International Co., Ltd Weitron International Refrigeration Equipment (Kunshan) Co., Ltd Zhejiang Lantian Environmental Protection Fluoro Material Co. Ltd Zhejiang Quzhou Lianzhou Refrigerants Co., Ltd Zhejiang Sanmei Chemical Industry Co. Ltd. (AKA Zhejiang Sanmei Chemical Ind. Co. Ltd.) Zhejiang Yonghe Refrigerant Co., Ltd The People's Republic of China: Certain Steel Nails A-570-909 8/1/16-7/31/17 Air It on Inc A-Jax Enterprises Ltd A-Jax International Co. Ltd Anhui Amigo Imp.& Exp. Co. Ltd Anhui Tea Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd Anjing Caiquing Hardware Co., Ltd Astrotech Steels Pvt. Ltd Beijing Catic Industry Ltd Beijing Qin-Li Jeff Trading Co., Ltd Bodi Corporation Cana (Rizhou) Hardward Co. Ltd Cangzhou Xinqiao Int'l Trade Co. Ltd Certified Products Taiwan Inc Changzhou Kya Trading Co. Ltd Chia Pao Metal Co. Ltd China Dinghao Co. Ltd China Staple Enterprise Co. Ltd Chinapack Ningbo Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd Chite Enterprise Co. Ltd Crelux Int'l Co. Ltd Daejin Steel Co. Ltd Dezhou Hualude Hardware Products Co. Ltd Dingzhou Baota Metal Products Co. Ltd Dong E Fuqiang Metal Products Co. Ltd Ejen Brother Limited Faithful Engineering Products Co. Ltd Fastening Care Fastgrow International Co. Inc Foshan Hosontool Development Hardware Co. Ltd Glori-Industry Hong Kong Inc Guangdong Meite Mechanical Co. Ltd Hangzhou Spring Washer Co. Ltd Hebei Canzhou New Century Foreign Trade Co. Ltd Hongyi (HK) Hardware Products Co. Ltd Huaiyang County Yinfeng Plastic Factory Huanghua Yingjin Hardware Products Inmax Industries Sdn. Bhd Jade Shuttle Enterprise Co. Ltd Jiangsu General Science Technology Co. Ltd Jiangsu Huaiyin Guex Tools Jiaxing TSR Hardware Inc Jinhai Hardware Co. Ltd Jinsco International Corp Jinsheung Steel Corporation Koram Inc Korea Wire Co. Ltd Liaocheng Minghui Hardware Products Maanshan Lilai International Trade. Co. Ltd Mingguang Abundant Hardware Products Co. Ltd Mingguang Ruifeng Hardware Products Co. Ltd Nailtech Co. Ltd Nanjing Caiquing Hardware Co. Ltd Nanjing Nuochun Hardware Co. Ltd Nanjing Tianxingtong Electronic Technology Co. Ltd Nanjing Tianyu International Co. Ltd Nanjing Zeejoe International Trade Ningbo Adv. Tools Co. Ltd Ningbo Fine Hardware Production Co. Ltd Overseas Distribution Services Inc Overseas International Steel Industry Paslode Fasteners Co. Ltd Patek Tool Co. Ltd President Industrial Inc Promising Way (Hong Kong) Ltd Qingda Jisco Co. Ltd Qingdao D&L Hardware Co. Ltd Qingdao Gold Dragon Co. Ltd Qingdao Hongyuan Nail Industry Co. Ltd Qingdao Meijialucky Industry and Co Qingdao MST Industry and Commerce Co. Ltd Qingdao Top Steel Industrial Co. Ltd Qingdao Uni-Trend International Quzhou Monsoon Hardware Co. Ltd Region Industries Co. Ltd Region System Sdn. Bhd Rise Time Industrial Ltd Romp Coil Nail Industries Inc R-Time Group Inc SDC International Australia Pty. Ltd Shandong Liaocheng Minghua Metal Pvt. Ltd Shandong Oriental Cherry Hardware Group Co. Ltd Shandong Oriental Cherry Hardware Import & Export Co. Ltd Shandong Qingyun Hongyi Hardware Co. Ltd Shanghai Curvet Hardware Products Co. Ltd Shanghai Haoray International Trade Co. Ltd Shanghai Jade Shuttle Hardware Tools Co. Ltd Shanghai Pioneer Speakers Co. Ltd Shanghai Seti Enterprise Int'l Co. Ltd Shanghai Yueda Nails Co. Ltd Shanxi Easyfix Trade Co. Ltd Shanxi Hairut Trade Co. Ltd Shanxi Pioneer Hardware Industrial Co. Ltd Shanxi Tianli Industries Co. Ltd Shaoxing Chengye Metal Producing Co. Ltd Shenzhen Xinjintal Hardware Co. Ltd S-Mart (Tianjin) Technology Development Co. Ltd Stanley Black & Decker Inc Suntec Industries Co. Ltd Suzhou Xingya Nail Co. Ltd Taizhou Dajiang Ind. Co. Ltd The Stanley Works (Langfang) Fastening Systems Co.,Ltd Theps International Tianji Hweschun Fasteners Manufacturing Co. Ltd Tianjin Baisheng Metal Products Co. Ltd Tianjin Bluekin Indusries Ltd Tianjin Coways Metal Products Co. Ltd Tianjin Dagang Jingang Nail Factory Tianjin Evangel Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd Tianjin Fulida Supply Co. Ltd Tianjin Huixingshangmao Co. Ltd Tianjin Jin Xin Sheng Long Metal Products Co. Ltd Tianjin Jinchi Metal Products Co. Ltd Tianjin Jinghai County Hongli Industry and Business Co. Ltd Tianjin Jinghai Yicheng Metal Pvt Tianjin Jinlin Pharmaceutical Factory Tianjin Jinmao Imp. & Exp. Corp. Ltd Tianjin Lianda Group Co. Ltd Tianjin Tianhua Environmental Plastics Co. Ltd Tianjin Universal Machinery Imp. & Exp Tianjin Yong Sheng Towel Mill Tianjin Yongye Furniture Co. Ltd Tianjin Zhonglian Metals Ware Co. Ltd Tianjin Zhonglian Times Technology Tianjin Zhongsheng Garment Co. Ltd Unicore Tianjin Fasteners Co. Ltd Win Fasteners Manufactory (Thailand) Co. Ltd Wulian Zhanpeng Metals Co. Ltd Xi'An Metals and Minerals Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd Yongchang Metal Product Co Yuyao Dingfeng Engineering Co. Ltd Zhangjiagang Lianfeng Metals Products Co. Ltd Zhangjiagang Longxiang Industries Co. Ltd Zhaoqing Harvest Nails Co. Ltd Zhejiang Best Nail Industry Co. Ltd Zhejiang Jihengkang (JHK) Door Ind. Co. Ltd Zhejiang Yiwu Yongzhou Imp. & Exp. Co. Ltd Zhong Shan Daheng Metal Products Co. Ltd Zhong Shan Shen Neng Metals Products Co. Ltd Zhucheng Jinming Metal Products Co. Ltd Zhucheng Runfang Paper Co. Ltd The People's Republic of China: Polyethylene Retail Carrier Bags A-570-886 8/1/16-7/31/17 Crown Polyethylene Products (International) Ltd Dongguan Nozawa Plastics Products Co., Ltd. and United Power Packaging, Ltd. (collectively Nozawa) High Den Enterprises Ltd Countervailing Duty Proceedings Italy: Certain Pasta 7 C-475-819 1/1/16-12/31/16 Antico Pastificio Morelli 1860 S.r.l Republic of Korea: Corrosion-Resistant Steel Products 8 C-580-879 11/6/15-12/31/16 Dongkuk Steel Mill Co., Ltd Jeil Sanup Co., Ltd Seil Steel Co., Ltd Union Steel Manufacturing Co., Ltd The People's Republic of China: Certain Passenger Vehicle and Light Truck Tires C-570-017 1/1/16-12/31/16 Best Industries Ltd BC Tyre Group Limited Cooper (Kunshan) Tire Co., Ltd Crown International Corporation Dongying Zhongyi Rubber Co., Ltd Hangzhou Yokohama Tire Co., Ltd Hankook Tire China Co., Ltd Hong Kong Tiancheng Investment & Trading Co., Limited Hongtyre Group Co Jiangsu Hankook Tire Co., Ltd Jiangsu Sanhe Aluminum Kenda Rubber (China) Co., Ltd Koryo International Industrial Limited Mayrun Tyre (Hong Kong) Limited Qingdao Jinhaoyang International Co., Ltd Qingdao Nama Industrial Co., Ltd Qingdao Odyking Tyre Co., Ltd Qingdao Sentury Tire Co., Ltd Roadclaw Tyre (Hong Kong) Limited Shandong Anchi Tyres Co., Ltd Shandong Changfeng Tyres Co., Ltd Shandong Changhong Rubber Technology Co., Ltd Shandong Guofeng Rubber Plastics Co., Ltd Shandong Haohua Tire Co., Ltd Shandong Haolong Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong Hengyu Science & Technology Co., Ltd Shandong Linglong Tyre Co., Ltd Shandong Longyue Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong New Continent Tire Co., Ltd Shandong Province Sanli Tire Shandong Province Sanli Tire Manufactured Co., Ltd Shandong Shuangwang Rubber Co., Ltd Shandong Wanda Boto Tyre Co., Ltd Shandong Yongsheng Rubber Group Co., Ltd Shandong Zhongyi Rubber Co., Ltd Shengtai Group Co., Ltd Shouguang Firemax Tyre Co., Ltd The Yokohama Rubber Company, Ltd Tyrechamp Group Co., Limited Winrun Tyre Co., Ltd Zhaoqing Junhong Co., Ltd Zhongce Rubber Group Company Limited Suspension Agreements None
    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.

    4 In the notice of initiation for July anniversary cases, published in the Federal Register on September 13, 2017 (82 FR 42974), the Department incorrectly identified “Netherland, B.V.” and “Uttam Galva Steels” as two separate companies when it should have been listed as a single company: Uttam Galva Steels, Netherlands, B.V. The Department hereby corrects that initiation notice and is publishing the names of all companies for which requests for review were received for the POR.

    5 In the initiation notice that published on September 13, 2017 (82 FR 42974) the Department inadvertently initiated a review of Welded Stainless Pressure Pipe from Socialist Republic of Vietnam for Mejonson Industrial Vietnam Co., Ltd. We did not intend to initiate a review of this company. This notice serves as a correction to the Initiation Notice.

    6 The company listed above was misspelled in the initiation notice that published on September 13, 2017 (82 FR 42974). The correct spelling of the company name is listed in this notice.

    7 In Initiation of Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Administrative Reviews, 82 FR 42074 (September 13, 2017), there was an error in the name of the company listed above. The company Antico Pastificio Morelli 1860 S.r.l. was incorrectly identified as Antico Pastificio Morelli 1870 S.r.l.. This notice serves as a correction to the initiation notice.

    8 The companies listed below were either misspelled or inadvertently omitted in the initiation notice that published on September 13, 2017 (82 FR 42974). This notice serves as a correction to the initiation Notice.

    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.9 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. 10 The Department intends to reject factual submissions in any proceeding segments if the submitting party does not comply with applicable revised certification requirements.

    9See section 782(b) of the Act.

    10See 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: October 10, 2017. James Maeder, Senior Director, performing the duties of Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22327 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration Antidumping or Countervailing Duty Order, Finding, or Suspended Investigation; Advance Notification of Sunset Reviews AGENCY:

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

    Background

    Every five years, pursuant to the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act), the Department of Commerce (the Department) and the International Trade Commission automatically initiate and conduct a review to determine whether revocation of a countervailing or antidumping duty order or termination of an investigation suspended under section 704 or 734 of the Act would be likely to lead to continuation or recurrence of dumping or a countervailable subsidy (as the case may be) and of material injury.

    Upcoming Sunset Reviews for November 2017

    Pursuant to section 751(c) of the Act, the following Sunset Reviews are scheduled for initiation in October 2017 and will appear in that month's Notice of Initiation of Five-Year Sunset Reviews (Sunset Reviews).

    With respect to the orders on Steel Wire Garment Hangers from Vietnam, we have advanced the initiation date of these Sunset Reviews upon determining that initiation of the Sunset Reviews for all of the Steel Garment Hangers orders on the same date would promote administrative efficiency.

    Department contact Antidumping Duty Proceedings Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells, Whether or Not Assembled into Modules from China (A-570-979) (1st Review) Matthew Renkey, (202) 482-2312. Honey from China (A-570-863) (3rd Review) Matthew Renkey, (202) 482-2312. Steel Wire Garment Hangers from Taiwan (A-583-849) (1st Review) Matthew Renkey, (202) 482-2312. Steel Wire Garment Hangers from Vietnam (A-552-812) (1st Review) Matthew Renkey, (202) 482-2312. Countervailing Duty Proceedings Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Cells, Whether or Not Assembled into Modules from China (1st Review) (C-570-980) Jacqueline Arrowsmith, (202) 482-5255. Steel Wire Garment Hangers from Vietnam (C-552-813) (1st Review) Matthew Renkey, (202) 482-2312. Suspended Investigations

    No Sunset Review of suspended investigations is scheduled for initiation in November 2017.

    The Department's procedures for the conduct of Sunset Reviews are set forth in 19 CFR 351.218. The Notice of Initiation of Five-Year (Sunset) Reviews provides further information regarding what is required of all parties to participate in Sunset Reviews.

    Pursuant to 19 CFR 351.103(c), the Department will maintain and make available a service list for these proceedings. To facilitate the timely preparation of the service list(s), it is requested that those seeking recognition as interested parties to a proceeding contact the Department in writing within 10 days of the publication of the Notice of Initiation.

    Please note that if the Department receives a Notice of Intent to Participate from a member of the domestic industry within 15 days of the date of initiation, the review will continue.

    Thereafter, any interested party wishing to participate in the Sunset Review must provide substantive comments in response to the notice of initiation no later than 30 days after the date of initiation.

    This notice is not required by statute but is published as a service to the international trading community.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. James Maeder, Senior Director performing the duties of Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22326 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [C-475-819] Certain Pasta From Italy: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; 2015 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On July 25, 2017, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the administrative review of the countervailing duty order on pasta from Italy. The period of review (POR) is January 1, 2015, through December 31, 2015. The review covers one producer/exporter of subject merchandise. We invited parties to comment on the Preliminary Results. None were received. Accordingly, for the final results, we continue to find that that Liguori Pastificio dal 1820 S.p.A. (Liguori) received countervailable subsidies during the POR.

    DATES:

    Applicable October 16, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Mary Kolberg, AD/CVD Operations, Office I, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-1785.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On July 25, 2017, the Department published the Preliminary Results of the administrative review.1 The Department gave interested parties an opportunity to comment on the Preliminary Results. None were received. The Department has conducted this review in accordance with section 751 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).

    1See Certain Pasta from Italy: Preliminary Results of Countervailing Duty Administrative Review; 2015, 82 FR 34481 (July 25, 2017) (Preliminary Results) and accompanying Preliminary Decision Memorandum.

    Scope of the Order

    Imports covered by the Order are shipments of certain non-egg dry pasta in packages of five pounds four ounces or less, whether or not enriched or fortified or containing milk or other optional ingredients such as chopped vegetables, vegetable purees, milk, gluten, diastasis, vitamins, coloring and flavorings, and up to two percent egg white. The pasta covered by the scope of the Order is typically sold in the retail market, in fiberboard or cardboard cartons, or polyethylene or polypropylene bags of varying dimensions.

    Excluded from the scope of the Order are refrigerated, frozen, or canned pastas, as well as all forms of egg pasta, with the exception of non-egg dry pasta containing up to two percent egg white. Multicolored pasta, imported in kitchen display bottles of decorative glass that are sealed with cork or paraffin and bound with raffia, is excluded from the scope of the Order. 2 Pursuant to the Department's May 12, 2011 changed circumstances review, effective January 1, 2009, gluten-free pasta is also excluded from the scope of the Order. 3 Effective January 1, 2012, ravioli and tortellini filled with cheese and/or vegetables are also excluded from the scope of the Order. 4

    2See Memorandum to Richard Moreland, dated August 25, 1997, which is on file in the CRU.

    3See Certain Pasta from Italy: Final Results of Countervailing Duty Changed Circumstances Review and Revocation, In Part, 76 FR 27634 (May 12, 2011).

    4See Certain Pasta from Italy: Final Results of Antidumping Duty and Countervailing Duty Changed Circumstances Reviews and Revocation, in Part 79 FR 58319, 58320 (September 29, 2014).

    Also excluded are imports of organic pasta from Italy that are certified by an EU authorized body in accordance with the United States Department of Agriculture's National Organic Program for organic products. The organic pasta certification must be retained by exporters and importers and made available to U.S. Customs and Border Protection or the Department of Commerce upon request.

    The merchandise subject to review is currently classifiable under items 1901.90.90.95 and 1902.19.20 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS). Although the HTSUS subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes, the written description of the merchandise subject to the Order is dispositive.

    Final Results of Review

    Because the Department received no comments after the Preliminary Results for consideration for these final results, we have made no changes to the Preliminary Results. As a result of this review, we determine that countervailable subsidies were provided to the respondent for the period January 1, 2015, through December 31, 2015, at the following rate: 5

    5 We have made no changes to this rate since the Preliminary Results. Therefore, no additional disclosure of calculations is necessary for these final results under 19 CFR 351.224(b).

    Producer/exporter Net
  • subsidy rate
  • (percent)
  • Liguori Pastificio dal 1820 S.p.A. 1.62
    Assessment Rates

    In accordance with 19 CFR 351.212(b)(2), the Department intends to issue assessment instructions to U.S. Customs and Boarder Protection (CBP) 15 days after the date of publication of these final results to liquidate shipments of subject merchandise produced by Liguori entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after January 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015 at the ad valorem rate listed above.

    Cash Deposit Instructions

    The Department also intends to instruct CBP to collect cash deposits of estimated CVDs in the amount shown above for shipments of subject merchandise by Liguori entered, or withdrawn from warehouse, for consumption on or after the date of publication of the final results of this 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. These cash deposit requirements, when imposed, shall remain in effect until further notice.

    Administrative Protective Orders

    This notice also serves as a reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the destruction of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3). Timely written notification of the return or destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation.

    We are issuing and publishing these results in accordance with sections 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, performing the non-exclusive functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22328 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE International Trade Administration [A-583-844] Narrow Woven Ribbons With Woven Selvedge From Taiwan; Final Determination of No Shipments; 2015-2016 AGENCY:

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

    SUMMARY:

    On June 8, 2017, the Department of Commerce (the Department) published the preliminary results of the 2015-2016 administrative review of the antidumping duty order on narrow woven ribbons with woven selvedge (NWR) from Taiwan. The period of review (POR) is September 1, 2015, through August 31, 2016. We received no comments from interested parties. Therefore, the Department continues to find that Fujian Rongshu Industry Co., Ltd. (Fujian Rongshu), Roung Shu Industry Corporation (Roung Shu), and Xiamen Yi He Textile Co., Ltd. (Xiamen Yi He) had no shipments of subject merchandise to the United States during the POR.

    DATES:

    Applicable October 16, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    David Crespo, AD/CVD Operations, Office II, Enforcement and Compliance, International Trade Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, 1401 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230; telephone: (202) 482-3693.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background

    On June 8, 2017, the Department published the Preliminary Results in the Federal Register.1 After the Preliminary Results, we conducted verification of the no-shipment claim submitted by Roung Shu, in accordance with section 782(i)(3) of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (the Act).2 We invited interested parties to comment on the preliminary results of the review.3 The Department conducted this administrative review in accordance with section 751(a)(1) of the Act.

    1See Narrow Woven Ribbons With Woven Selvedge From Taiwan; Preliminary Determination of No Shipments and Rescission, in Part, of Antidumping Duty Administrative Review; 2015-2016, 82 FR 26664 (June 8, 2017) (Preliminary Results).

    2See Memorandum, “Verification of the Sales Response of Roung Shu Industry Corporation in the 2015-2016 Antidumping Duty Adminsitrative Review of Narrow Woven Ribbons with Woven Selvedge from Taiwan,” dated September 21, 2017.

    3See Preliminary Results, 82 FR at 26666.

    Scope of the Order

    The scope of this order covers narrow woven ribbons with woven selvedge, in any length, but with a width (measured at the narrowest span of the ribbon) less than or equal to 12 centimeters, composed of, in whole or in part, man-made fibers (whether artificial or synthetic, including but not limited to nylon, polyester, rayon, polypropylene, and polyethylene teraphthalate), metal threads and/or metalized yarns, or any combination thereof. Narrow woven ribbons subject to the order may:

    • Also include natural or other non-man-made fibers;

    • be of any color, style, pattern, or weave construction, including but not limited to single faced satin, double-faced satin, grosgrain, sheer, taffeta, twill, jacquard, or a combination of two or more colors, styles, patterns, and/or weave constructions;

    • have been subjected to, or composed of materials that have been subjected to, various treatments, including but not limited to dyeing, printing, foil stamping, embossing, flocking, coating, and/or sizing;

    • have embellishments, including but not limited to appliqué, fringes, embroidery, buttons, glitter, sequins, laminates, and/or adhesive backing;

    • have wire and/or monofilament in, on, or along the longitudinal edges of the ribbon;

    • have ends of any shape or dimension, including but not limited to straight ends that are perpendicular to the longitudinal edges of the ribbon, tapered ends, flared ends or shaped ends, and the ends of such woven ribbons may or may not be hemmed;

    • have longitudinal edges that are straight or of any shape, and the longitudinal edges of such woven ribbon may or may not be parallel to each other;

    • consist of such ribbons affixed to like ribbon and/or cut-edge woven ribbon, a configuration also known as an “ornamental trimming;”

    • be wound on spools; attached to a card; hanked (i.e., coiled or bundled); packaged in boxes, trays or bags; or configured as skeins, balls, bateaus or folds; and/or

    • be included within a kit or set such as when packaged with other products, including but not limited to gift bags, gift boxes and/or other types of ribbon.

    Narrow woven ribbons subject to the order include all narrow woven fabrics, tapes, and labels that fall within this written description of the scope of this antidumping duty order.

    Excluded from the scope of the order are the following:

    (1) Formed bows composed of narrow woven ribbons with woven selvedge;

    (2) “pull-bows” (i.e., an assemblage of ribbons connected to one another, folded flat and equipped with a means to form such ribbons into the shape of a bow by pulling on a length of material affixed to such assemblage) composed of narrow woven ribbons;

    (3) narrow woven ribbons comprised at least 20 percent by weight of elastomeric yarn (i.e., filament yarn, including monofilament, of synthetic textile material, other than textured yarn, which does not break on being extended to three times its original length and which returns, after being extended to twice its original length, within a period of five minutes, to a length not greater than one and a half times its original length as defined in the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), Section XI, Note 13) or rubber thread;

    (4) narrow woven ribbons of a kind used for the manufacture of typewriter or printer ribbons;

    (5) narrow woven labels and apparel tapes, cut-to-length or cut-to-shape, having a length (when measured across the longest edge-to-edge span) not exceeding eight centimeters;

    (6) narrow woven ribbons with woven selvedge attached to and forming the handle of a gift bag;

    (7) cut-edge narrow woven ribbons formed by cutting broad woven fabric into strips of ribbon, with or without treatments to prevent the longitudinal edges of the ribbon from fraying (such as by merrowing, lamination, sono-bonding, fusing, gumming or waxing), and with or without wire running lengthwise along the longitudinal edges of the ribbon;

    (8) narrow woven ribbons comprised at least 85 percent by weight of threads having a denier of 225 or higher;

    (9) narrow woven ribbons constructed from pile fabrics (i.e., fabrics with a surface effect formed by tufts or loops of yarn that stand up from the body of the fabric);

    (10) narrow woven ribbon affixed (including by tying) as a decorative detail to non-subject merchandise, such as a gift bag, gift box, gift tin, greeting card or plush toy, or affixed (including by tying) as a decorative detail to packaging containing non-subject merchandise;

    (11) narrow woven ribbon that is (a) affixed to non-subject merchandise as a working component of such non-subject merchandise, such as where narrow woven ribbon comprises an apparel trimming, book marker, bag cinch, or part of an identity card holder, or (b) affixed (including by tying) to non-subject merchandise as a working component that holds or packages such non-subject merchandise or attaches packaging or labeling to such non-subject merchandise, such as a “belly band” around a pair of pajamas, a pair of socks or a blanket;

    (12) narrow woven ribbon(s) comprising a belt attached to and imported with an item of wearing apparel, whether or not such belt is removable from such item of wearing apparel; and

    (13) narrow woven ribbon(s) included with non-subject merchandise in kits, such as a holiday ornament craft kit or a scrapbook kit, in which the individual lengths of narrow woven ribbon(s) included in the kit are each no greater than eight inches, the aggregate amount of narrow woven ribbon(s) included in the kit does not exceed 48 linear inches, none of the narrow woven ribbon(s) included in the kit is on a spool, and the narrow woven ribbon(s) is only one of multiple items included in the kit.

    The merchandise subject to this order is classifiable under the HTSUS statistical categories 5806.32.1020; 5806.32.1030; 5806.32.1050; and 5806.32.1060. Subject merchandise also may enter under subheadings 5806.31.00; 5806.32.20; 5806.39.20; 5806.39.30; 5808.90.00; 5810.91.00; 5810.99.90; 5903.90.10; 5903.90.25; 5907.00.60; and 5907.00.80 and under statistical categories 5806.32.1080; 5810.92.9080; 5903.90.3090; and 6307.90.9889. The HTSUS statistical categories and subheadings are provided for convenience and customs purposes; however, the written description of the merchandise covered by this order is dispositive.

    Final Determination of No Shipments

    As noted in the Preliminary Results, we preliminarily determined that Fujian Roungshu, Roung Shu, and Xiamen Yi He had no shipments of subject merchandise during the POR. Also in the Preliminary Results, the Department stated that, consistent with its practice, it would complete the review with respect to these companies and issue appropriate instructions to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) based on the final results.4

    4See Preliminary Results, 82 FR at 26666.

    After issuing the Preliminary Results, the Department received no comments from interested parties, and has not received any information that would cause it to alter its preliminary determination. Therefore, because the record indicates that these companies did not export subject merchandise to the United States, the Department continues to find that Fujian Roungshu, Roung Shu, and Xiamen Yi He had no shipments of subject merchandise during the POR. As the Department received no comments for consideration in these final results, the Department has not prepared an Issues and Decision Memorandum for this review.

    Assessment Rates

    Pursuant to section 751(a)(2)(C) of the Act, and 19 CFR 351.212(b)(1), the Department has determined, and CBP shall assess, antidumping duties on all appropriate entries of subject merchandise in accordance with the final results of this review. The Department intends to issue appropriate assessment instructions directly to CBP 15 days after publication of the final results of this administrative review. Additionally, because the Department determined that Fujian Roungshu, Roung Shu, and Xiamen Yi He had no shipments of subject merchandise during the POR, any suspended entries that entered under Fujian Roungshu, Roung Shu, or Xiamen Yi He's case number (i.e., at that exporter's rate) will be liquidated at the all-others rate if there is no rate for the intermediate company(ies) involved in the transaction.5

    5See Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Proveedings: Assessment of Antidumping Duties, 68 FR 23954 (May 6, 2003).

    Notification to Importers

    This notice also serves as a final reminder to importers of their responsibility under 19 CFR 351.402(f)(2) to file a certificate regarding the reimbursement of antidumping duties prior to liquidation of the relevant entries during this review period. Failure to comply with this requirement could result in the Department's presumption that reimbursement of antidumping duties occurred and the subsequent assessment of double antidumping duties.

    Notification Regarding Administrative Protective Order

    This notice serves as the only reminder to parties subject to administrative protective order (APO) of their responsibility concerning the disposition of proprietary information disclosed under APO in accordance with 19 CFR 351.305(a)(3). Timely written notification of return/destruction of APO materials or conversion to judicial protective order is hereby requested. Failure to comply with the regulations and the terms of an APO is a sanctionable violation.

    This notice is published in accordance with section 751(a)(1) and 777(i)(1) of the Act and 19 CFR 351.213(h) and 351.221(b)(5).

    Dated: October 6, 2017. Gary Taverman, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Antidumping and Countervailing Duty Operations, performing the non-exclusive functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary for Enforcement and Compliance.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22329 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-DS-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF754 Fisheries of the South Atlantic; South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meetings AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of meetings.

    SUMMARY:

    The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold meetings of its Citizen Science Advisory Panel Data Management; Volunteers; Communication/Outreach/Education; Projects/Topics Management; Finance & Infrastructure Action Teams via webinar.

    DATES:

    The Data Management Team meeting will be held Thursday, November 2, 2017 at 2 p.m.; Volunteers Team on Friday, November 3, 2017 at 10 a.m.; Communication/Outreach/Education Team on Friday, November 3, 2017 at 2 p.m.; Projects/Topics Management Team on Monday, November 6 at 4 p.m.; and Finance & Infrastructure Team on Thursday, November 9, 2017 at 2 p.m. Each meeting is scheduled to last approximately 90 minutes. Additional Action Team webinar and plenary webinar dates and times will publish in a subsequent issue in the Federal Register.

    ADDRESSES:

    Meeting address: The meetings will be held via webinar and are open to members of the public. Webinar registration is required and registration links will be posted to the Citizen Science program page of the Council's Web site at www.safmc.net.

    Council address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Amber Von Harten, Citizen Science Program Manager, SAFMC; phone: (843) 302-8433 or toll free (866) SAFMC-10; fax: (843) 769-4520; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The Council created a Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool in June 2017. The Council appointed members of the Citizen Science Advisory Panel Pool to five Action Teams in the areas of Volunteers, Data Management, Projects/Topics Management, Finance, and Communication/Outreach/Education to develop program policies and operations for the Council's Citizen Science Program.

    Each Action Team will meet to continue work on developing recommendations on program policies and operations to be reviewed by the Council's Citizen Science Committee. Public comment will be accepted at the beginning of the meeting. Items to be addressed during these meetings:

    1. Discuss work on tasks in the Terms of Reference 2. Other Business Special Accommodations

    These meetings are physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the council office (see ADDRESSES) 3 days prior to the meeting.

    Note:

    The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22361 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF743 Pacific Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of public meeting (webinar).

    SUMMARY:

    The Pacific Fishery Management Council's (Pacific Council) Salmon Technical Team and Model Evaluation Workgroup will hold a joint meeting via webinar. The meeting is open to the public.

    DATES:

    The webinar meeting will be held on Thursday, November 2, 2017, from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., or until business for the day is completed.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held via webinar. A public listening station is available at the Pacific Council office (address below). To attend the webinar (1) join the meeting by visiting this link https://www.gotomeeting.com/webinar, (2) enter the Webinar ID: 801-211-715, and (3) enter your name and email address (required). After logging in to the webinar, please (1) dial this TOLL number 1-213-929-4232 (not a toll-free number), (2) enter the attendee phone audio access code 705-203-131, and (3) then enter your audio phone pin (shown after joining the webinar). Note: We have disabled Mic/Speakers as an option and require all participants to use a telephone or cell phone to participate. Technical Information and system requirements: PC-based attendees are required to use Windows® 7, Vista, or XP; Mac®-based attendees are required to use Mac OS® X 10.5 or newer; Mobile attendees are required to use iPhone®, iPad®, AndroidTM phone or Android tablet (see the https://www.gotomeeting.com/webinar/ipad-iphone-android-webinar-apps). You may send an email to Mr. Kris Kleinschmidt at [email protected] or contact him at (503) 820-2280, extension 411 for technical assistance.

    Council address: Pacific Fishery Management Council, 7700 NE. Ambassador Place, Suite 101, Portland, OR 97220.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Robin Ehlke, Pacific Council; telephone: (503) 820-2410.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The purpose of the meeting is to discuss items on the November 2017 Pacific Council meeting agenda. Major topics include, but are not limited to: Salmon Methodology Review, the 2018 Salmon Management Schedule, and Final Recommendations on the Sacramento River Winter Chinook Control Rule. If time allows, additional topics may be discussed, including but not limited to future Council agenda items.

    Although non-emergency issues not contained in the meeting agenda may be discussed, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during this meeting. Action will be restricted to those issues specifically listed in this document and any issues arising after publication of this document that require emergency action under section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, provided the public has been notified of the intent to take final action to address the emergency.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Mr. Kris Kleinschmidt (503) 820-2411 at least 10 business days prior to the meeting date.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22359 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF752 New England Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice; public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The New England Fishery Management Council (Council) is scheduling a joint public meeting of its Joint Whiting Committee and Advisory Panel on October 30, 2017, to consider actions affecting New England fisheries in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ). Recommendations from this group will be brought to the full Council for formal consideration and action, if appropriate.

    DATES:

    This meeting will be held on Monday, October 30, 2017 at 10 a.m.

    ADDRESSES:

    Meeting address: The meeting will be held at the Hampton Inn, 2100 Post Road, Warwick, RI 02886; Telephone: (401) 739-8888.

    Council address: New England Fishery Management Council, 50 Water Street, Mill 2, Newburyport, MA 01950.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Thomas A. Nies, Executive Director, New England Fishery Management Council; telephone: (978) 465-0492.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Agenda

    After hearing analysis and recommendations from the Whiting Plan Development Team, the Committee and Advisory Panel will approve Draft Amendment 22 alternatives that would trigger whiting and red hake possession limit reductions for limited access Category 2 and Incidental Permits when catches exceed Annual Catch Limits, overfishing occurs, or other circumstances. Final approval of the Draft Amendment 22 document is expected at the December 2017 Council meeting. Council staff will report on progress of SSC approval of 2018-20 specifications, the specifications document, the Draft Amendment 22 document, 2018 priorities and other business.

    Although non-emergency issues not contained in this agenda may come before this group for discussion, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during the meeting. Action will be restricted to those issues specifically listed in this notice and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council's intent to take final action to address the emergency.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. This meeting will be recorded. Consistent with U.S.C. 1852, a copy of the recording is available upon request. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Thomas A. Nies, Executive Director, at (978) 465-0492, at least 5 days prior to the meeting date.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22360 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF759 Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Notice of a public meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council will hold a half day webinar meeting of its Standing and Reef Fish Scientific and Statistical Committees (SSC).

    DATES:

    The meeting will convene via webinar on Tuesday, October 31, 2017, from 12 p.m. until 5 p.m. EDT.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be via WEBINAR; you may access the link below and on the Council's Web site.

    Council address: Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council, 2203 N. Lois Avenue, Suite 1100, Tampa, FL 33607; telephone: (813) 348-1630.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Steven Atran, Senior Fishery Biologist, Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council; [email protected], telephone: (813) 348-1630.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Tuesday, October 31, 2017, 12 p.m.-5 p.m., EDT I. Introductions and Adoption of Agenda II. Approval of Minutes a. March 27-29, 2017 SSC meeting b. May 10, 2017 SSC webinar III. Review of Relevant Legislative Approaches to Recreational Red Snapper Management IV. SEDAR Activities a. Status of SEDAR 48—black grouper benchmark assessment b. FWC Gulf hogfish update assessment—Terms of Reference c. SEDAR 61 Gulf red grouper standard assessment i. Terms of reference ii. Project schedule iii. Assessment workshop appointments d. SEDAR 58 Stock ID TORs for cobia V. A Comparison of Recent Stock Assessment Results Using SS3 vs. DLMToolkit a. Greater amberjack b. Gray triggerfish VI. Review of Framework Action to Modify the ACT for Red Snapper Federal For-Hire and Private Angler Components VII. Preliminary Discussion on Approaches to estimating Red Snapper Biomass off Each Gulf State VIII. Other Business —Meeting Adjourns

    You may register for the SSC Meeting: Standing and Reef Fish on or before Tuesday, October 31, 2017 at the link provided below: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4747113251445458690

    The Agenda is subject to change, and the latest version along with other meeting materials will be posted on the Council's file server. To access the file server, the URL is https://public.gulfcouncil.org:5001/webman/index.cgi, or go to the Council's Web site and click on the FTP link in the lower left of the Council Web site (http://www.gulfcouncil.org). The username and password are both “gulfguest”. Click on the “Library Folder”, then scroll down to “SSC meeting-2017-10-webinar”.

    Although other non-emergency issues not on the agenda may come before the Scientific and Statistical Committee for discussion, in accordance with the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during this meeting. Actions of the Scientific and Statistical Committee will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in the agenda and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under Section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council's intent to take action to address the emergency.

    Special Accommodations

    This meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for sign language interpretation or other auxiliary aids should be directed to Kathy Pereira at the Gulf Council Office (see ADDRESSES), at least 5 working days prior to the meeting.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22363 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration RIN 0648-XF757 South Atlantic Fishery Management Council; Public Meeting AGENCY:

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

    ACTION:

    Meeting of the South Atlantic Fishery Management Council.

    SUMMARY:

    The South Atlantic Fishery Management Council (Council) will hold a meeting via webinar to discuss revisions to the Acceptable Biological Catch (ABC) Control Rule.

    DATES:

    The Council meeting will be held from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Monday, November 6, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held via webinar. The webinar is open to members of the public. Registration is required. Registration information will be posted on the Council's Web site at: http://safmc.net/meetings/council-meetings/.

    Council address: South Atlantic Fishery Management Council, 4055 Faber Place Drive, Suite 201, N. Charleston, SC 29405.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Kim Iverson, Public Information Officer, SAFMC; phone: (843) 571-4366 or toll free: (866) SAFMC-10; fax: (843) 769-4520; email: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    The meeting will be held via webinar. Meeting information including agenda and briefing book materials will be posted on the Council's Web site as they become available at: http://safmc.net/meetings/council-meetings/. Public comment on agenda items will be accepted at the beginning of the meeting.

    The items of discussion are as follows:

    1. Update on Scientific and Statistical Committee (SSC) discussions pertaining to revisions to the ABC Control Rule,

    2. Review options for possible actions, and

    3. Discuss and provide guidance.

    Although non-emergency issues not contained in this agenda may come before this group for discussion, those issues may not be the subject of formal action during this meeting. Action will be restricted to those issues specifically identified in this notice and any issues arising after publication of this notice that require emergency action under section 305(c) of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, provided the public has been notified of the Council's intent to take final action to address the emergency.

    Special Accommodations

    The meeting is physically accessible to people with disabilities. Requests for auxiliary aids should be directed to the council office (see ADDRESSES) 3 days prior to the meeting.

    Note:

    The times and sequence specified in this agenda are subject to change.

    Authority:

    16 U.S.C. 1810 et seq.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Jeffrey N. Lonergan, Acting Deputy Director, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, National Marine Fisheries Service.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22362 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 3510-22-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary [Docket ID: DOD-2017-HA-0036] Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs (OASD HA), DoD.

    ACTION:

    30-Day information collection notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Department of Defense has submitted to OMB for clearance, the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act.

    DATES:

    Consideration will be given to all comments received by November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments and recommendations on the proposed information collection should be emailed to Ms. Cortney Higgins, DoD Desk Officer, at [email protected] Please identify the proposed information collection by DoD Desk Officer and the Docket ID number and title of the information collection.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Fred Licari, 571-372-0493, or [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title, Associated Form and OMB Number: TRICARE Award Fee Provider Survey; OMB Control Number 0720-0048.

    Type of Request: Reinstatement.

    Number of Respondents: 1,224.

    Responses per Respondent: 1.

    Annual Responses: 1,224.

    Average Burden per Response: 5 minutes.

    Annual Burden Hours: 102.

    Needs and Uses: The information collection requirement is necessary to obtain and record TRICARE network civilian provider-user satisfaction with the administrative processes/services of managed care support contractors (MCSC) in three TRICARE regions within the United States (North, West, and South) and three regions internationally (Europe, Pacific and Latin America). The survey will obtain TRICARE network civilian provider opinions regarding claims processing, customer service, and administrative support by the TRICARE regional contractors. The reports of findings from these surveys, coupled with performance criteria from other sources, will be used by the TRICARE Regional Administrative Contracting Officers to determine incentive award fee determination.

    Affected Public: Businesses or other for profit; not for-profit institutions.

    Frequency: Monthly.

    Respondent's Obligation: Voluntary.

    OMB Desk Officer: Ms. Cortney Higgins.

    You may also submit comments and recommendations, identified by Docket ID number and title, by the following method:

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

    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name, Docket ID number and title for this Federal Register document. The general policy for comments and other submissions from members of the public is to make these submissions available for public viewing on the Internet at http://www.regulations.gov as they are received without change, including any personal identifiers or contact information.

    DOD Clearance Officer: Mr. Frederick Licari.

    Written requests for copies of the information collection proposal should be sent to Mr. Licari at WHS/ESD Directives Division, 4800 Mark Center Drive, East Tower, Suite 03F09, Alexandria, VA 22350-3100.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22321 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-P
    DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary Defense Innovation Board; Notice of Federal Advisory Committee Meeting AGENCY:

    Deputy Chief Management Officer, Department of Defense (DoD).

    ACTION:

    Notice of Federal Advisory Committee meeting.

    SUMMARY:

    The DoD is publishing this notice to announce that the following Federal Advisory Committee meeting of the Defense Innovation Board (DIB) will take place.

    DATES:

    Open to the public, Tuesday, October 24, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

    ADDRESSES:

    The meeting will be held at 1776 Crystal City, 2231 Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 22202. Additionally, the meeting will be live streamed for those who are unable to physically attend the meeting.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Roma Laster, (703) 695-7563 (Voice), (703) 614-4365 (Facsimile), [email protected] (Email). Mailing address is Defense Innovation Board, 9000 Defense Pentagon, Room 5E572, Washington, DC 20350.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Due to circumstances beyond the control of the Designated Federal Officer and the Department of Defense, the Defense Innovation Board was unable to provide public notification concerning its meeting on October 24, 2017, as required by 41 CFR 102-3.150(a). Accordingly, the Advisory Committee Management Officer for the Department of Defense, pursuant to 41 CFR 102-3.150(b), waives the 15-calendar day notification requirement.

    This meeting is being held under the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) of 1972 (5 U.S.C., Appendix, as amended), the Government in the Sunshine Act of 1976 (5 U.S.C. 552b, as amended), and 41 CFR 102-3.140 and 102-3.150.

    Purpose of the Meeting: The mission of the DIB is to examine and provide the Secretary of Defense and the Deputy Secretary of Defense independent advice and recommendations on innovative means to address future challenges in terms of integrated change to organizational structure and processes, business and functional concepts, and technology applications. The DIB focuses on (a) technology and capabilities, (b) practices and operations, and (c) people and culture.

    Agenda: The DIB will discuss potential recommendations to (1) Establish a Department of Defense Accelerator, (2) Develop an Innovation Career Track, and (3) Build Innovation Capacity with Partners and Allies. The DIB will invite selected experts to provide analysis and inputs related to innovation, innovation cells, and innovation activities within DoD. The DIB will invite selected experts to provide analysis and inputs related to workforce innovation initiatives; potential experts include representatives from the Office of the Vice Chief of Staff of the Air Force, Illuminate at U.S. Fleet Forces Command, the Future Concepts team at U.S. Army Special Operations Command, the Joint Development Technology Accelerator, and NextLog at USMC Installations & Logisitcs. The DIB will receive an update on the Science & Technology subcommittee's current work on software acquisition and reform guidance. The DIB's Executive Director will brief the DIB on DoD's latest implementation activities related to DIB recommendations. Members of the public will have an opportunity to provide input on the DIB's potential recommendations to establish a DoD accelerator, develop an innovation career track, and build innovation capacity with partners and allies.

    Meeting Accessibility: Pursuant to Federal statutes and regulations (FACA, the Government in the Sunshine Act and 41 CFR 102-3.140 through 102-3.165) and the availability of space, the meeting is open to the public from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Seating is on a first-come basis. Members of the public wishing to attend the meeting or wanting to receive a link to the live stream webcast should contact the Executive Director to register no later than October 20, 2017, by email at [email protected]

    Special Accommodations: Individuals requiring special accommodations to access the public meeting should contact the Executive Director at least five business days prior to the meeting so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

    Written Statements: Pursuant to section 10(a)(3) of the FACA and 41 CFR 102-3.140, the public or interested organizations may submit written comments to the DIB about its approved agenda pertaining to this meeting or at any time regarding the DIB's mission. Individuals submitting a written statement must submit their statement to the Executive Director at [email protected] Written comments that do not pertain to a scheduled meeting may be submitted at any time. However, if individual comments pertain to a specific topic being discussed at the planned meeting, then such comments must be received in writing not later than October 20, 2017. The Executive Director will compile all written submissions received by the deadline and provide them to Board Members prior to the meeting. Comments received after this date may not be provided to or considered by the DIB until a later date.

    Oral Presentations: Individuals wishing to make an oral statement to the DIB at the public meeting may be permitted to speak for up to three minutes. Anyone wishing to speak to the DIB should submit a request by email at [email protected] not later than October 20, 2017 for planning. Requests for oral comments should include a copy or summary of planned remarks for archival purposes. Individuals may also be permitted to submit a comment request at the public meeting; however, depending on the number of individuals requesting to speak, the schedule may limit participation. Webcast attendees will be provided instructions with the live stream link if they wish to submit comments during the open meeting.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Aaron Siegel, Alternate OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, Department of Defense.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22367 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 5001-06-PA16OC3.
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2017-ICCD-0126] Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Student Assistance General Provision—Subpart I—Immigration Status Confirmation AGENCY:

    Federal Student Aid (FSA), 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 December 15, 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-0126. 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 216-34, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Beth Grebeldinger, 202-377-4018.

    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: Student Assistance General Provision—Subpart I—Immigration Status Confirmation.

    OMB Control Number: 1845-0052.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments; Individuals or Households; Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 142,706.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 17,838.

    Abstract: This request is for an extension of the reporting requirements currently in Student Assistance General Provisions, 34 CFR 668, Subpart I which governs the Immigration-Status Confirmation authorized by section 484(g) of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended. This collection updates the usage by individuals and schools. This is necessary to determine eligibility to receive program benefits and to prevent fraud and abuse of program funds.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Kate Mullan, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22307 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2017-ICCD-0125] Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Third Party Servicer Data Collection AGENCY:

    Federal Student Aid, Department of Education.

    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 December 15, 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-0125. 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 216-34, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Beth Grebeldinger, 202-377-4018.

    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: Third Party Servicer Data Collection.

    OMB Control Number: 1845-0130.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments; Individuals or Households; Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 325.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 334.

    Abstract: The Department of Education (ED) is seeking continued approval of a Third Party Servicer Data Collection form to be used to collect information from Third Party Servicers, validate the information reported to ED by higher education institutions regarding third party servicers that administer one or more aspects of the administration of the Title IV, Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, programs on an institution's behalf, and to collect additional information required for effective oversight of these entities.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Kate Mullan, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22306 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION [Docket No.: ED-2017-ICCD-0127] Agency Information Collection Activities; Comment Request; Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) for Disbursing Title IV Aid to Students With Intellectual Disabilities Expenditure Report AGENCY:

    Federal Student Aid (FSA), 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 December 15, 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-0127. 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 216-34, Washington, DC 20202-4537.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For specific questions related to collection activities, please contact Tammy Gay, 816-804-0848.

    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: Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) for Disbursing Title IV Aid to Students with Intellectual Disabilities Expenditure Report.

    OMB Control Number: 1845-0113.

    Type of Review: An extension of an existing information collection.

    Respondents/Affected Public: State, Local, and Tribal Governments; Private Sector.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Responses: 70.

    Total Estimated Number of Annual Burden Hours: 140.

    Abstract: The Higher Education Opportunity Act, Public Law 110-315, added provisions for the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, in section 750 and 766 that enable eligible students with intellectual disabilities to receive Federal Pell Grant, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grant, and Federal Work Study funds if they are enrolled in an approved program. The Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) for Disbursing Title IV Aid to Students with Intellectual Disabilities expenditure report is the tool for reporting the use of these specific funds. The data will be used by the Department to monitor program effectiveness and accountability of fund expenditures. The data is used in conjunction with institutional program reviews to assess the administrative capability and compliance of the applicant.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Kate Mullan, Acting Director, Information Collection Clearance Division, Office of the Chief Privacy Officer, Office of Management.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22308 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4000-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Bonneville Power Administration Electrical Interconnection of the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project AGENCY:

    Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), Department of Energy (DOE).

    ACTION:

    Notice of Availability of Record of Decision (ROD).

    SUMMARY:

    This notice announces the availability of the ROD to interconnect the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project in Grant and Yakima Counties, Washington. BPA has decided to implement its part of the Vantage to Pomona Heights 230-kilovolt (kV) Transmission Line Project (Project) that was analyzed in the Vantage to Pomona Heights 230-kV Transmission Line Project Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) (DOI-BLM-OR-134-2013-0002-EIS and DOE/EIS-0505, October 2016). Pacific Power will construct, operate, and maintain the Project, which will be a new 230-kV transmission line that will extend from PacifiCorp's existing Pomona Heights Substation in Yakima County, Washington to BPA's existing Vantage Substation in Grant County, Washington. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) was the Lead Federal Agency under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for preparation of the EIS for the Project. Twelve other public entities, including BPA, were involved in the EIS as cooperating agencies under NEPA. BPA has adopted the Final EIS for the Project.

    BPA's action related to the Project is to allow the interconnection of Pacific Power's transmission line to BPA's Vantage Substation. To allow this interconnection, BPA will execute a Line and Load Interconnection agreement with PacifiCorp 1 to provide interconnection facilities and services for the transmission line. Interconnection will involve connecting Pacific Power's transmission line to an existing substation bay at BPA's Vantage Substation, connecting the transmission line's fiber to the Vantage Substation control house, and installing and operating related electrical, metering, and relay equipment. The interconnection facilities will be located mostly on BPA-owned property within the Vantage Substation fence line.

    1 Pacific Power is a division of PacifiCorp. Pacific Power has proposed the construction of the Vantage to Pomona Heights Transmission Line Project, while PacifiCorp has requested interconnection of the Project to BPA's Vantage Substation.

    Pacific Power has recently received approvals from the BLM and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation) to construct, operate and maintain one of the alternatives—the New Northern Route (NNR) Alternative with an Overhead Design Option—that was considered and analyzed in the Final EIS for the Project. BPA's decision to implement its part of the Project is consistent with those approvals.

    All the required design features and mitigation measures for the transmission line described in the Draft EIS, Supplemental Draft EIS, and updated in the Final EIS have been adopted by Pacific Power. Pacific Power will be responsible for executing mitigation measures identified in the EIS.

    ADDRESSES:

    The ROD will be available to all interested parties and affected persons and agencies. Copies of the ROD, Draft EIS, Supplemental Draft EIS, and Final EIS can be accessed at BPA's Project Web site at www.bpa.gov/goto/V2PInterconnection.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT:

    Katey Grange, Bonneville Power Administration—ECT-4, P.O. Box 3621, Portland, Oregon 97208-3621; toll-free telephone number 1-800-622-4519; fax number 503-230-5699; or email [email protected]a.gov.

    Issued in Portland, Oregon, on October 3, 2017. Elliot Mainzer, Administrator and Chief Executive Officer.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22046 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Certification Notice—250; Notice of Filing of Self-Certification of Coal Capability Under the Powerplant and Industrial Fuel Use Act AGENCY:

    Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, DOE.

    ACTION:

    Notice of filing.

    SUMMARY:

    On September 12, 2017, NTE Carolinas II, LLC, as owner and operator of a new baseload electric generating powerplant, submitted a coal capability self-certification to the Department of Energy (DOE) to § 201(d) of the Powerplant and Industrial Fuel Use Act of 1978 (FUA), as amended, and DOE regulations. The FUA and regulations thereunder require DOE to publish a notice of filing of self-certification in the Federal Register.

    ADDRESSES:

    Copies of coal capability self-certification filings are available for public inspection, upon request, in the Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability, Mail Code OE-20, Room 8G-024, Forrestal Building, 1000 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20585.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Christopher Lawrence at (202) 586-5260.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    On September 12, 2017, NTE Carolinas II, LLC, as owner and operator of a new baseload electric generating powerplant, submitted a coal capability self-certification to the Department of Energy (DOE) pursuant to § 201(d) of the Powerplant and Industrial Fuel Use Act of 1978 (FUA), as amended, and DOE regulations in 10 CFR 501.60, 61. The FUA and regulations thereunder require DOE to publish a notice of filing of self-certification in the Federal Register. 42 U.S.C. 8311(d) and 10 CFR 501.61(c). Title II of FUA, as amended (42 U.S.C. 8301 et seq.), provides that no new base load electric powerplant may be constructed or operated without the capability to use coal or another alternate fuel as a primary energy source. Pursuant to the FUA, in order to meet the requirement of coal capability, the owner or operator of such a facility proposing to use natural gas or petroleum as its primary energy source shall certify to the Secretary of Energy (Secretary) prior to construction, or prior to operation as a base load electric powerplant, that such powerplant has the capability to use coal or another alternate fuel. Such certification establishes compliance with FUA section 201(a) as of the date it is filed with the Secretary. 42 U.S.C. 8311.

    The following owner of a proposed new baseload electric generating powerplant has filed a self-certification of coal-capability with DOE pursuant to FUA section 201(d) and in accordance with DOE regulations in 10 CFR 501.60, 61:

    Owner: NTE Carolinas II, LLC Capacity: 500 megawatts (MW) Plant Location: Reidsville, NC 27320 In-Service Date: Early as November 2020 Issued in Washington, DC, on October 10, 2017. Christopher Lawrence, Electricity Policy Analyst, Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22314 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6450-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following exempt wholesale generator filings:

    Docket Numbers: EG18-5-000.

    Applicants: Voyager Wind II, LLC.

    Description: Notice of Self-Certification of Exempt Wholesale Generator Status of Voyager Wind II, LLC.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5216.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER17-2097-001.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: 2017-10-06_Deficiency Response to Dynamic NCA Filing to be effective 1/4/2018.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5161.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-41-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2017-10-06_Continuous Improvement 3_RFP Staggering & Guidance Narrative Filing to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5173.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-42-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2017-10-06_Continuous Improvement 4_Proposal Submission & Eval Process Filing to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5189.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-43-000.

    Applicants: Wisconsin Power and Light Company, Quilt Block Wind Farm LLC.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: LBA Agreement Between WPL and Quilt Block Wind Farm LLC to be effective 9/18/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5193.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-44-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2017-10-06_Continuous Improvement 5_Multi-Facility & Mixed Facility Eval Filing to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5195.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-45-000.

    Applicants: Southern California Edison Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: SA No. 972, DSA for Moreno Valley, Kitching Street to be effective 11/3/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5013.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-46-000.

    Applicants: Southwest Power Pool, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 1636R20 Kansas Electric Power Cooperative, Inc. NITSA and NOA to be effective 10/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5165.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-47-000.

    Applicants: Voyager Wind II, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: MBR Application to be effective 12/10/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5200.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22280 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #2

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER17-2420-001.

    Applicants: Alcoa Power Generating Inc.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: Amendment to Supplemental TSA to be effective 7/1/2016.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5214.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-49-000.

    Applicants: Arizona Public Service Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Service Agreement Recollation to be effective 10/10/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5250.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-50-000.

    Applicants: Arizona Public Service Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Administrative Filing Amendment for ER17-2379-000 to be effective 8/30/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5265.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-51-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Interconnection Service Agreement No. 3808, Queue No. AB2-050 to be effective 9/7/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5285.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-52-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Original Service Agreement No. 4795; Queue AC2-139 (WMPA) to be effective 9/8/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/10/17.

    Accession Number: 20171010-5291.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/31/17.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22279 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission [Docket No. ER17-2580-000] SEMASS Partnership; Supplemental Notice That Initial Market-Based Rate Filing Includes Request for Blanket Section 204 Authorization

    This is a supplemental notice in the above-referenced proceeding of SEMASS Partnership's application for market-based rate authority, with an accompanying rate tariff, noting that such application includes a request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability.

    Any person desiring to intervene or to protest should file with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426, in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Rules of Practice and Procedure (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214). Anyone filing a motion to intervene or protest must serve a copy of that document on the Applicant.

    Notice is hereby given that the deadline for filing protests with regard to the applicant's request for blanket authorization, under 18 CFR part 34, of future issuances of securities and assumptions of liability, is October 26, 2017.

    The Commission encourages electronic submission of protests and interventions in lieu of paper, using the FERC Online links at http://www.ferc.gov. To facilitate electronic service, persons with Internet access who will eFile a document and/or be listed as a contact for an intervenor must create and validate an eRegistration account using the eRegistration link. Select the eFiling link to log on and submit the intervention or protests.

    Persons unable to file electronically should submit an original and 5 copies of the intervention or protest to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426.

    The filings in the above-referenced proceeding are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the appropriate link in the above list. They are also available for electronic review in the Commission's Public Reference Room in Washington, DC. There is an eSubscription link on the Web site that enables subscribers to receive email notification when a document is added to a subscribed docket(s). For assistance with any FERC Online service, please email [email protected] or call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 6, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22275 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings #1

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric corporate filings:

    Docket Numbers: EC18-2-000.

    Applicants: Oncor Electric Delivery Company LLC, Sempra Energy.

    Description: Joint Application for Expedited Approval of the Disposition of Jurisdictional Facilities under Section 203 of the FPA of Oncor Electric Delivery Company LLC, et al.

    Filed Date: 10/5/17.

    Accession Number: 20171005-5145.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/26/17.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric rate filings:

    Docket Numbers: ER10-2487-004; ER15-2380-002.

    Applicants: Pacific Summit Energy LLC, Willey Battery Utility, LLC.

    Description: Supplement to June 27, 2017 Triennial Market Power Update for the Northeast Region of the Sumitomo Companies.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5085.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER15-1029-003.

    Applicants: Chubu TT Energy Management Inc.

    Description: Clarification to June 30, 2017 Triennial Market Power Update for the Northeast Region of Chubu TT Energy Management Inc.

    Filed Date: 10/5/17.

    Accession Number: 20171005-5153.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/26/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-2340-000.

    Applicants: Golden Hills North Wind, LLC.

    Description: Amendment to August 21, 2017 Golden Hills North Wind, LLC tariff.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5162.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER17-2381-000.

    Applicants: Scott-II Solar LLC.

    Description: Third Supplement to August 30, 2017 Scott-II Solar LLC tariff filing.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5099.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-1-001.

    Applicants: California Independent System Operator Corporation.

    Description: Tariff Amendment: 2017-10-05 Amendment to Filing to Correct Tariff Record RSI Phase 1B and Phase 2 to be effective 2/15/2018.

    Filed Date: 10/5/17.

    Accession Number: 20171005-5139.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/26/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-33-000.

    Applicants: Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation, New York Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: Tariff Cancellation: Niagara Mohawk filing—cancellation of SGIA 1488 w/Selkirk Cogen Partners to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5027.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-34-000.

    Applicants: Mid-Atlantic Interstate Transmission, LLC, PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: MAIT submits Engineering and Construction Services Agreement SA No. 4718 to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5031.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-35-000.

    Applicants: Public Service Company of Colorado.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: PSCo-HLYCRS-O&M Agrmt-430-0.0.0 Filing to be effective 6/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5033.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-36-000.

    Applicants: PJM Interconnection, L.L.C.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: Queue Position #AA1-043, Original Service Agreement No. 4807 to be effective 9/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5063.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-37-000.

    Applicants: Southern California Edison Company.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: GIA & Amended DSA Phoenix Wind Project SA Nos 971 & 17 to be effective 10/7/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5090.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-38-000.

    Applicants: DV Trading, LLC.

    Description: Baseline eTariff Filing: DV Trading New Company's Tariff (Initial Tariff Baseline) to be effective 10/15/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5131.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-39-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2017-10-06_Continuous Improvement_Misc Revisions, Improvements & Clarifications to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5163.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Docket Numbers: ER18-40-000.

    Applicants: Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc.

    Description: § 205(d) Rate Filing: 2017-10-06_Continuous Improvement 2_Developer Recertification Enhancements to be effective 12/6/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/6/17.

    Accession Number: 20171006-5172.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/27/17.

    Take notice that the Commission received the following electric securities filings:

    Docket Numbers: ES18-2-000.

    Applicants: Mississippi Power Company.

    Description: Application of Mississippi Power Company for Extension of Authorization to Issue Securities under Section 204 of the Federal Power Act and of Exemption from Competitive Bidding Requirements and Request for Expedited Action.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5177.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/25/17.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 6, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22274 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: CP18-2-000.

    Applicants: Southern Natural Gas Company, L.L.C.

    Description: Application for Authorization of Abandonment for Rate Schedule X-72.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5096.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/24/17.

    Docket Numbers: CP18-3-000.

    Applicants: Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company, L.L.C., et al.

    Description: Joint Abbreviated Application to Abandon and Acquire Facilities and Related Authorizations.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5169.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/24/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-15-000.

    Applicants: Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Union Electric Negotiated Rate Filing RP18- to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5025.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-16-000.

    Applicants: Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: CNE Gas Supply Negotiated Rate Filing RP18- to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5028.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-17-000.

    Applicants: Rockies Express Pipeline LLC.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Neg Rate 10-04-2017 Encana to be effective 10/4/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5040.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-18-000.

    Applicants: Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Amendment to MacQuarie NRAgreement to be effective 10/4/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5048.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-19-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 100417 Negotiated Rates—Mercuria Energy America, Inc. R-7540-02 to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/4/17.

    Accession Number: 20171004-5106.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-20-000.

    Applicants: High Island Offshore System, L.L.C.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Amendment to FT-2 Contract to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/5/17.

    Accession Number: 20171005-5022.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/17/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-21-000.

    Applicants: Gulf South Pipeline Company, LP.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Amendments to Neg Rate Agmts (FPL 41618-30, 41619-16) to be effective 10/5/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/5/17.

    Accession Number: 20171005-5028.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/17/17.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and § 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 5, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22277 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Combined Notice of Filings

    Take notice that the Commission has received the following Natural Gas Pipeline Rate and Refund Report filings:

    Filings Instituting Proceedings

    Docket Numbers: RP18-7-000.

    Applicants: Enable Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Description: Annual Report of Total Penalty Revenue Credits of Enable Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5076.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-8-000.

    Applicants: Enable Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Description: Annual Report of Linked Firm Service Penalty Revenue Credits of Enable Gas Transmission, LLC.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5077.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-9-000.

    Applicants: Equitrans, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Negotiated Capacity Release Agreements—10/3/2017 to be effective 10/3/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5092.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-10-000.

    Applicants: Gulf South Pipeline Company, LP.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: Cap Rel Neg Rate Agmt (PH 41455 to Texla 48604) to be effective 10/3/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5093.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-11-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 100317 Negotiated Rates—Consolidated Edison Energy Inc. R-2275-12 to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5112.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-12-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 100317 Negotiated Rates—Consolidated Edison Energy Inc. R-2275-13 to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5113.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-13-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 100317 Negotiated Rates—Spark Energy Gas, LLC R-3045-21 to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5117.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    Docket Numbers: RP18-14-000.

    Applicants: Iroquois Gas Transmission System, L.P.

    Description: § 4(d) Rate Filing: 100317 Negotiated Rates—Spark Energy Gas, LLC R-3045-20 to be effective 11/1/2017.

    Filed Date: 10/3/17.

    Accession Number: 20171003-5125.

    Comments Due: 5 p.m. ET 10/16/17.

    The filings are accessible in the Commission's eLibrary system by clicking on the links or querying the docket number.

    Any person desiring to intervene or protest in any of the above proceedings must file in accordance with Rules 211 and 214 of the Commission's Regulations (18 CFR 385.211 and § 385.214) on or before 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on the specified comment date. Protests may be considered, but intervention is necessary to become a party to the proceeding.

    eFiling is encouraged. More detailed information relating to filing requirements, interventions, protests, service, and qualifying facilities filings can be found at: http://www.ferc.gov/docs-filing/efiling/filing-req.pdf. For other information, call (866) 208-3676 (toll free). For TTY, call (202) 502-8659.

    Dated: October 4, 2017. Nathaniel J. Davis, Sr., Deputy Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22276 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6717-01-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY EPA-HQ-OAR-2016-0546; FRL-9969-55-OAR] Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Aircraft Engines—Supplemental Information Related to Exhaust Emissions (Renewal) AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The EPA is planning to submit an information collection request (ICR), “Aircraft Engines—Supplemental Information Related to Exhaust Emissions (Renewal)” (EPA ICR No. 2427.04, OMB Control No. 2060-0680), to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA). As the first step in the process, the EPA is soliciting public comments on specific aspects of the proposed renewal of, and amendment to, an existing information collection as described below. The current ICR is approved through September 30, 2018. An agency may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before December 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, referencing Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2016-0546 online using www.regulations.gov (our preferred method), by email to [email protected], or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460.

    EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Cullen Leggett, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Office of Air and Radiation, Environmental Protection Agency; telephone number: (734) 214-4514; fax number: (734) 214-4816; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Supporting documents which explain in detail the information that the EPA will be collecting are available in the public docket for this renewal of an existing ICR. The docket can be viewed online at www.regulations.gov or in person at the EPA Docket Center, WJC West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The telephone number for the Docket Center is 202-566-1744. For additional information about EPA's public docket, visit http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, the EPA is soliciting comments and information to enable it to: (i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (ii) evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (iii) enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (iv) minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond,

    including through the use of appropriate automated electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. The EPA will consider the comments received and revise the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval. At that time, the EPA will issue another Federal Register notice to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB.

    Abstract: Using its Clean Air Act authority in sections 231 and 114, 42 U.S.C. 7571 and 7414, the EPA is proposing to renew the existing data collection requirement for new aircraft engines to report emissions information, production volumes, and technical parameters. Also, at this time, the EPA is proposing to amend this existing requirement to collect data on non-volatile particulate matter (nvPM) emissions from some classes of aircraft engines.

    Form Numbers: EPA Form Number: 5900-223 (proposed revision).

    Respondents/affected entities: Respondents affected by this action are the manufacturers of aircraft gas turbine engines. Manufacturers producing aircraft gas turbine engines with a sea level static thrust greater than 26.7 kN will be subject to the new requirement for nvPM reporting. Table 1 below presents some examples of potentially affected entities according to NAICS code. Table 1 is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for respondents regarding facilities likely to be affected by this amendment to and renewal of the existing ICR.

    Table 1—Examples of Potentially Affected Entities by Category Category NAICS code Example of potentially affected entities 336412 Aircraft Engine and Engine Parts Manufacturing.

    Respondent's obligation to respond: Mandatory (pursuant to section 114 of the Clean Air Act).

    Estimated number of respondents: 7 (total).

    Frequency of response: Annual.

    Total estimated response burden: 502 hours (per year). Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.03(b).

    Total estimated cost: $129,597 (total).

    Dated: October 5, 2017. Christopher Grundler, Director, Office of Transportation and Air Quality, Office of Air and Radiation.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22355 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0004; FRL-9967-58] Access to Confidential Business Information by Patriot L.L.C. and Its Identified Subcontractor, Vision Technologies, Inc. AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA has authorized its contractor, Patriot L.L.C. of Columbia, MD, and Vision Technologies, Inc. (VTI) of Glen Burnie, MD, its identified subcontractor to access information which has been submitted to EPA under all sections of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). Some of the information may be claimed or determined to be Confidential Business Information (CBI).

    DATES:

    Access to the confidential data will occur no sooner than October 23, 2017.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: Scott Sherlock, Environmental Assistance Division (7408M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (202) 564-8257; fax number: (202) 564-8251; email address: [email protected]

    For general information contact: The TSCA-Hotline, ABVI-Goodwill, 422 South Clinton Ave., Rochester, NY 14620; telephone number: (202) 554-1404; email address: [email protected]

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

    This action is directed to the public in general. This action may, however, be of interest to all who manufacture, process, or distribute industrial chemicals. Since other entities may also be interested, the Agency has not attempted to describe all the specific entities that may be affected by this action.

    B. How can I get copies of this document and other related information?

    The docket for this action, identified by docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPPT-2003-0004 is available at http://www.regulations.gov or at the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics Docket (OPPT Docket), Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 566-1744, and the telephone number for the OPPT Docket is (202) 566-0280. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    II. What action is the Agency taking?

    Under EPA contract number HHSN316201200065W, order number HHSN31600002, contractor Patriot L.L.C. of 9520 Berger Road, Suite 212, Columbia, MD; and VTI of 530 McCormick Drive, Suite 6, Glen Burnie, MD will assist EPA's Office of Research and Development by supporting the desktop systems on which the CBI will reside. The contractor will also provide information technology support and solutions to enhance science and research results.

    In accordance with 40 CFR 2.306(j), EPA has determined that under EPA contract number HHSN316201200065W, order number HHSN31600002, Patriot and VTI will require access to CBI submitted to EPA under all sections of TSCA to perform successfully the duties specified under the contract. Patriot and VTI personnel will be given access to information submitted to EPA under all section(s) of TSCA. Some of the information may be claimed or determined to be CBI.

    EPA is issuing this notice to inform all submitters of information under all sections of TSCA that EPA may provide Patriot and VTI access to these CBI materials on a need-to-know basis only. All access to TSCA CBI under this contract will take place at EPA Headquarters in accordance with EPA's TSCA CBI Protection Manual.

    Access to TSCA data, including CBI, will continue until February 27, 2022. If the contract is extended, this access will also continue for the duration of the extended contract without further notice.

    Patriot and VTI personnel will be required to sign nondisclosure agreements and will be briefed on appropriate security procedures before they are permitted access to TSCA CBI.

    Authority:

    15 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.

    Dated: September 13, 2017. Pamela Myrick, Director, Information Management Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22366 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OPPT-2013-0677; FRL-9968-57] Receipt of Information Under the Toxic Substances Control Act AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    EPA is announcing its receipt of information submitted pursuant to a rule, order, or consent agreement issued under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA). As required by TSCA, this document identifies each chemical substance and/or mixture for which information has been received; the uses or intended uses of such chemical substance and/or mixture; and describes the nature of the information received. Each chemical substance and/or mixture related to this announcement is identified in Unit I. under SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For technical information contact: John Schaeffer, Chemical Control Division (7405M), Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460-0001; telephone number: (202) 564-8173; email address: [email protected]

    For general information contact: The TSCA-Hotline, ABVI-Goodwill, 422 South Clinton Ave., Rochester, NY 14620; telephone number: (202) 554-1404; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    I. Chemical Substances and/or Mixtures

    Information received about the following chemical substances and/or mixtures is provided in Unit IV.:

    A. Octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4) (CASRN: 556-67-2).

    B. 2-Oxiranemethanamine, N-[4-(2-oxiranylmethoxy)phenyl]-N-(2-oxiranylmethyl)- (CASRN 5026-74-4).

    II. Authority

    Section 4(d) of TSCA (15 U.S.C. 2603(d)) requires EPA to publish a notice in the Federal Register reporting the receipt of information submitted pursuant to a rule, order, or consent agreement promulgated under TSCA section 4 (15 U.S.C. 2603).

    III. Docket Information

    A docket, identified by the docket identification (ID) number EPA-HQ-OPPT-2013-0677, has been established for this Federal Register document, which announces the receipt of the information. Upon EPA's completion of its quality assurance review, the information received will be added to the docket identified in Unit IV., which represents the docket used for the TSCA section 4 rule, order, and/or consent agreement. In addition, once completed, EPA reviews of the information received will be added to the same docket. Use the docket ID number provided in Unit IV. to access the information received and any available EPA review.

    EPA's dockets are available electronically at http://www.regulations.gov or in person at the Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics Docket (OPPT Docket), Environmental Protection Agency Docket Center (EPA/DC), West William Jefferson Clinton Bldg., Rm. 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The Public Reading Room is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The telephone number for the Public Reading Room is (202) 556-1744, and the telephone number for the OPPT Docket is (202) 556-0280. Please review the visitor instructions and additional information about the docket available at http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    IV. Information Received

    As specified by TSCA section 4(d), this unit identifies the information received by EPA.

    A. Octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4) (CASRN: 556-67-2)

    1. Chemical Uses: D4 is used as an intermediate for silicone copolymers and other chemicals. D4 is also used in industrial processing applications as a solvent (which becomes part of a product formulation or mixture), finishing agent, and an adhesive and sealant chemical. It is also used for both consumer and commercial purposes in paints and coatings, and plastic and rubber products and has consumer uses in polishes, sanitation, soaps, detergents, adhesives, and sealants.

    2. Applicable Rule, Order, or Consent Agreement: Enforceable Consent Agreement for Environmental Testing for Octamethylcyclotetrasiloxane (D4) (CASRN 556-67-2).

    3. Information Received: The following listing describes the nature of the information received. The information will be added to the docket for the applicable TSCA section 4 rule, order, or consent agreement and can be found by referencing the docket ID number provided. EPA reviews of information will be added to the same docket upon completion.

    a. Letter to EPA with responses to EPA comments on Section 4 Interim Progress Report 6.

    b. D4 Environmental Testing Final Report (2 volumes including Text, Figures, Tables and Appendices A through ZA).

    The docket ID number assigned to this information is EPA-HQ-OPPT-2012-0209.

    B. 2-Oxiranemethanamine, N-[4-(2-oxiranylmethoxy)phenyl]-N-(2-oxiranylmethyl)- (CASRN 5026-74-4)

    1. Chemical Uses: 2-Oxiranemethanamine, N-[4-(2-oxiranylmethoxy)phenyl]-N-(2-oxiranylmethyl)- is used in resin and synthetic rubber manufacturing and aerospace and parts manufacturing.

    2. Applicable Rule, Order, or Consent Agreement: Chemical testing requirements for third group of high production volume chemicals (HPV3), 40 CFR 799.5089.

    3. Information Received: EPA received the following information: Equivalence Data: Oral (Gavage) 2 Generation Reproductive Toxicity Study, Final Report.

    The docket ID number assigned to this information is EPA-HQ-OPPT-2009-0112.

    Authority:

    15 U.S.C. 2601 et seq.

    Dated: September 29, 2017. Maria J. Doa, Director, Chemical Control Division, Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22369 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0371; FRL-9968-83-OAR] Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings (Renewal) AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is planning to submit an information collection request (ICR), “National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings,” (EPA ICR No. 1750.08, OMB Control No. 2060-0393) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act. Before doing so, the EPA is soliciting public comments on specific aspects of the proposed information collection as described below. This is a proposed extension of the ICR, which is currently approved through April 30, 2018. An agency may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before December 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, referencing Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2011-0371 in the subject line, online using www.regulations.gov (our preferred method), by email to: [email protected], or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460.

    The EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Ms. Kim Teal, Sector Polices and Programs Division (Mail Code D243-04), Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Research Triangle Park, North Carolina 27711; telephone number: (919) 541-5580; fax number: (919) 541-4991; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Supporting documents which explain in detail the information that the EPA will be collecting are available in the public docket for this ICR. The docket can be viewed online at www.regulations.gov or in person at the EPA Docket Center, EPA WJC West Building, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The telephone number for the Docket Center is 202-566-1744. For additional information about the EPA's public docket, visit http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the Paperwork Reduction Act, the EPA is soliciting comments and information to enable it to: (i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (ii) evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (iii) enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (iv) minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. The EPA will consider the comments received and amend the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval. At that time, the EPA will issue another Federal Register notice to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB.

    Abstract: The EPA is required under section 183(e) of the Clean Air Act (CAA) to regulate volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions from the use of consumer and commercial products. Pursuant to CAA section 183(e)(3), the EPA published a list of consumer and commercial products and a schedule for their regulation (60 FR 15264). Architectural and industrial maintenance coatings are included on the list, and the standards for such coatings are codified at 40 CFR part 59, subpart D. The information collection includes initial reports and periodic recordkeeping necessary for the EPA to ensure compliance with federal standards for VOC in architectural coatings. Respondents are manufacturers, distributors, and importers of architectural coatings. Responses to the collection are mandatory under 40 CFR part 59, subpart D—National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings. All information submitted to the EPA for which a claim of confidentiality is made will be safeguarded according to the agency policies set forth in 40 CFR part 2, subpart B—Confidentiality of Business Information.

    Form Numbers: None.

    Respondents/affected entities: Entities potentially affected by this action as respondents are manufacturers, distributors, or importers of architectural and industrial maintenance coatings and coating components for sale or distribution in the United States, including the District of Columbia and all United States territories.

    Respondent's obligation to respond: Mandatory under 40 CFR part 59, subpart D—National Volatile Organic Compound Emission Standards for Architectural Coatings.

    Estimated number of respondents: 500 (total).

    Frequency of response: On occasion.

    Total estimated burden: 14,436 hours (per year). Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.03(b).

    Total estimated cost: $1,377,634 (per year). There are no annualized capital or operation and maintenance costs.

    Changes in Estimates: This notice reflects differences in the total estimated respondent burden compared with the ICR currently approved by OMB. Specifically, the total estimated respondent burden hours have changed from 14,661 to 14,436 and the total estimated respondent burden cost has changed from $1,261,526 to $1,377,634, which is a reflection of a mathematical error that was identified during the development of this renewal. The individual elements that are compiled to reflect total respondent burden hours and cost have not changed since the last renewal, we're only correcting the math error for the total estimated burden.

    Dated: October 10, 2017. Panagiotis Tsirigotis, Director, Sector Policies and Programs Division.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22330 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY [EPA-HQ -OW-2002-0011; FRL-9969-53-OW] Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium Under the Safe Drinking Water Act (Renewal) AGENCY:

    Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

    ACTION:

    Notice.

    SUMMARY:

    The Environmental Protection Agency is planning to submit an information collection request (ICR), “Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program for Analysis of Cryptosporidium Under the Safe Drinking Water Act” (EPA ICR No. 2067.06, OMB Control No. 2040-0246) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act. Before doing so, EPA is soliciting public comments on specific aspects of the proposed information collection request as described below. This is a proposed extension of the ICR, which is currently approved through March 31, 2018. An Agency may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Comments must be submitted on or before December 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Submit your comments, referencing Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OW-2002-0011, online using www.regulations.gov (our preferred method), by email to [email protected], or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20460.

    EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Dan Hautman, Technical Support Center (TSC), Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water, (MC-140), Environmental Protection Agency, 26 West Martin Luther King Drive, Cincinnati, Ohio 45268; telephone number: 513-569-7274; fax number: 513-569-7191; email address: [email protected]

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Supporting documents which explain in detail the information that the EPA will be collecting are available in the public docket for this ICR. The docket can be viewed online at www.regulations.gov or in person at the EPA Docket Center, WJC West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Ave. NW., Washington, DC. The telephone number for the Docket Center is 202-566-1744. For additional information about EPA's public docket, visit http://www.epa.gov/dockets.

    Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, EPA is soliciting comments and information to enable it to: (i) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will have practical utility; (ii) evaluate the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (iii) enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (iv) minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses. EPA will consider the comments received and amend the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval. At that time, EPA will issue another Federal Register notice to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB.

    Abstract: Under the Long Term 2 Enhanced Surface Water Treatment Rule (LT2ESWTR), EPA requires public water systems (PWSs) to use approved laboratories when conducting Cryptosporidium monitoring. The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) at 40 CFR 141.705(a) provides for approval of Cryptosporidium laboratories by “an equivalent” state laboratory certification program (i.e., equivalent to EPA's Laboratory Quality Assurance Evaluation Program). In the preamble to the LT2ESWTR as well as several other notices, EPA has described the criteria for approval of laboratories to analyze Cryptosporidium samples under the LT2ESWTR. See the following Federal Register notices: 78 FR 54643 (September 5, 2013), 74 FR 8529 (February 25, 2009), 71 FR 727 (January 5, 2006) and 67 FR 9731 (March 4, 2002).

    State responsibilities for Cryptosporidium laboratory approval and oversight will be comparable to their certification responsibilities for the chemistry and microbiology laboratories that they oversee in their current programs (e.g., initial evaluation of laboratory capability; ongoing assessment of the laboratory—including an assessment of Proficiency Test results; and on-site audits, at least triennially). Whereas 40 CFR 142.10(b) generally requires the establishment and maintenance of a laboratory “certification” program for all regulated analytes, state approval programs for Cryptosporidium laboratories are optional based on the structure of the LT2ESWTR (40 CFR 141.705(a)).

    If a laboratory is located in a state that does not operate a Cryptosporidium laboratory certification/accreditation program, that laboratory can still support LT2ESWTR monitoring if the laboratory has been approved by another state's laboratory certification/accreditation program that: (1) Has demonstrated substantial conformity to procedures described in Chapter 7 of “Supplement 2 to the Fifth Edition of the Manual for the Certification of Laboratories Analyzing Drinking Water” https://www.epa.gov/dwlabcert/supplement-2-fifth-edition-manual-certification-laboratories-analyzing-drinking-water; and (2) uses auditors that have passed EPA's Technical Support Center's (TSC) Cryptosporidium Laboratory Certification Officers Training Course. PWSs should be aware that their states may establish requirements that are more stringent than EPA's regulations; state requirements would take precedence.

    Consistent with the longstanding laboratory certification program approach, and resources-permitting, TSC will: (1) Train state/regional Certification Officers (CO) responsible for auditing Cryptosporidium laboratories; (2) provide written guidance to state/regional COs; (3) provide day-to-day technical support to states, EPA Regions, and laboratories; (4) review/assist the regional programs that oversee state certification/accreditation programs; and (5) maintain a list of links to state Web sites naming certified laboratories and/or a list of certified laboratories on EPA's Web site.

    Form Numbers: None.

    Respondents/affected entities: Interested states and laboratories.

    Respondent's obligation to respond: Voluntary.

    Estimated number of respondents: 43 labs and 20 states/territories.

    Frequency of response: Annual.

    Total estimated burden: 3,741 hours (per year). Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.03(b).

    Total estimated cost: $669,490, includes $332,891 annualized capital or operation & maintenance costs.

    Changes in Estimates: There is decrease of 1,731 hours and $134,284 in the total estimated respondent burden compared with the ICR currently approved by OMB. This decrease is due to a reduced number of laboratories (45 to 43), re-evaluation of hours for tasks, and an improved demonstration of capability by the laboratories.

    Dated: October 4, 2017. Peter Grevatt, Director, Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22350 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6560-50-P
    EXPORT-IMPORT BANK [Public Notice 2017-6011] Agency Information Collection Activities: Comments Request AGENCY:

    Export-Import Bank of the United States.

    ACTION:

    Submission for OMB review and comments request.

    SUMMARY:

    The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM), as a part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal Agencies to comment on the proposed information collection, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    Our customers will be able to submit this form on paper or electronically. This form is used by insurance brokers to register with Export-Import Bank. It provides EXIM staff with the information necessary to make a determination of the eligibility of the broker to receive commission payments under Export-Import Bank's credit insurance programs.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before December 15, 2017 to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted electronically on www.regulations.gov or by mail to Mia Johnson, Export-Import Bank of the United States, 811 Vermont Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20571. Form can be viewed at https://www.exim.gov/sites/default/files/pub/pending/eib92-79.pdf.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title and Form Number: EIB 92-79 Broker Registration Form.

    Form Title: EIB 92-79 Broker Registration Form.

    OMB Number: 3048-0024.

    Type of Review: Regular.

    Need and Use: This form is used by insurance brokers to register with Export Import Bank. The form provides Export Import Bank staff with the information necessary to make a determination of the eligibility of the broker to receive commission payments under Export Import Bank's credit insurance programs.

    Affected Public: This form affects entities engaged in brokering export credit insurance policies.

    Annual Number of Respondents: 50.

    Estimated Time per Respondent: 15 minutes.

    Frequency of Reporting or Use: Once every three years.

    Government Expenses:

    Review Time per Response: 2 hours.

    Reviewing Time per Year: 100 hours.

    Average Wages per Hour: $42.50.

    Average Cost per Year: $4,250.

    Benefits and Overhead: 20%.

    Total Government Cost: $5,100.

    Bassam Doughman, IT Specialist.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22297 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6690-01-P
    EXPORT-IMPORT BANK [Public Notice 2017-6010] Agency Information Collection Activities: Comment Request AGENCY:

    Export-Import Bank of the United States.

    ACTION:

    Submission for OMB review and comments request.

    SUMMARY:

    The Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM), as a part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public and other Federal Agencies to comment on the proposed information collection, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

    The collection provides EXIM staff with the information necessary to monitor the borrower's payments for exported goods covered under its short and medium-term export credit insurance policies. It also alerts EXIM staff of defaults, so they can manage the portfolio in an informed manner.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received on or before December 15, 2017 to be assured of consideration.

    ADDRESSES:

    Comments may be submitted electronically on www.regulations.gov or by mail to Mia Johnson, Export-Import Bank of the United States, 811 Vermont Ave. NW., Washington, DC 20571.

    Form can be viewed at https://www.exim.gov/sites/default/files/pub/pending/eib92-27.pdf.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    Title and Form Number: EIB 92-27 Report of Overdue Accounts Under Short-Term Policies.

    OMB Number: 3048-0027.

    Type of Review: Regular.

    Need and Use: The collection provides EXIM staff with the information necessary to monitor the borrower's payments for exported goods covered under its short- and medium term export credit insurance policies. It also alerts Ex-Im Bank staff of defaults, so they can manage the portfolio in an informed manner.

    Affected Public: This form affects entities involved in the export of U.S. goods and services.

    Annual Number of Respondents: 745.

    Estimated Time per Respondent: 15 minutes.

    Annual Burden Hours: 186.25 hours.

    Frequency of Reporting or Use: Monthly.

    Government Expenses:

    Reviewing Time per Year: 186.25 hours.

    Average Wages per Hour: $42.50.

    Average Cost per Year: $7,915.62.

    Benefits and Overhead: 20%.

    Total Government Cost: $9,498.75.

    Bassam Doughman, IT Specialist.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22298 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6690-01-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION [OMB 3060-1186] Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or the Commission) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collection. Comments are requested concerning: whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees. The FCC may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the PRA that does not display a valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number.

    DATES:

    Written PRA comments should be submitted on or before December 15, 2017. If you anticipate that you will be submitting comments, but find it difficult to do so within the period of time allowed by this notice, you should advise the contact listed below as soon as possible.

    ADDRESSES:

    Direct all PRA comments to Nicole Ongele, FCC, via email [email protected] and to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For additional information about the information collection, contact Nicole Ongele at (202) 418-2991.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. Comments are requested concerning: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

    OMB Control Number: 3060-1186.

    Title: Rural Call Completion Recordkeeping and Reporting Requirements, WC Docket No. 13-39.

    Form Number: FCC Form 480.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Respondents: Business or other for-profit.

    Number of Respondents and Responses: 60 respondents; 280 responses.

    Estimated Time per Response: 26 hours per quarter (on average).

    Frequency of Response: Quarterly reporting requirement and recordkeeping requirement.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. Statutory authority for this information collection is contained in sections 201, 202, 217, 218, 220(a), and 403 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended.

    Total Annual Burden: 6,240 hours.

    Total Annual Cost: $550,000.

    Privacy Act Impact Assessment: No impact(s).

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: The Commission is not requesting respondents to submit confidential information. Any respondent that submits information to the Commission that they believe is confidential may request confidential treatment of such information under 47 CFR 0.459 of the Commission's rules.

    Needs and Uses: The recordkeeping and reporting requirements as adopted apply to long-distance service providers and other covered providers that make the initial long-distance call path choice for more than 100,000 retail long-distance subscribers lines. Based on the Commission's experience to date with these rules, we estimate approximately 60 wireline, wireless, and wholesale providers will be required to file an electronic report with the FCC. We note that the number of providers this estimate replaces, 225, was also an approximation.

    The Commission believes that rural call completion is a continuing problem and that continued Commission focus on the issue is warranted. Given the approaching deadline to renew OMB approval for this information collection, and the fact that the rules underlying this information collection are still in effect and will remain so while Commission action on this matter is pending, we request an extension of the current approval. We expect that the Commission's proposals to modify these rules will be resolved within the time frame of the extension, at which point the Commission would seek any necessary modification to the current collection.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary, Office of the Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22340 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    FEDERAL COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION [OMB 3060-0222] Information Collection Being Reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission Under Delegated Authority AGENCY:

    Federal Communications Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comments.

    SUMMARY:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), the Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. Comments are requested concerning: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

    The FCC may not conduct or sponsor a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid Office of Management and Budget (OMB) control number. No person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information subject to the PRA that does not display a valid OMB control number.

    DATES:

    Written comments should be submitted on or before December 15, 2017. If you anticipate that you will be submitting comments, but find it difficult to do so within the period of time allowed by this notice, you should advise the contacts below as soon as possible.

    ADDRESSES:

    Direct all PRA comments to Cathy Williams, FCC, via email [email protected] and to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    For additional information about the information collection, contact Cathy Williams at (202) 418-2918.

    SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

    As part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork burdens, and as required by the PRA of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), the FCC invites the general public and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on the following information collections. Comments are requested concerning: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information shall have practical utility; the accuracy of the Commission's burden estimate; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology; and ways to further reduce the information collection burden on small business concerns with fewer than 25 employees.

    OMB Control No.: 3060-0222.

    Title: Section 97.213, Telecommand of an Amateur Station.

    Form No.: N/A.

    Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

    Respondents: Business or other for profit entities.

    Number of Respondents and Responses: 40,000 respondents and 40,000 responses.

    Estimated Time per Response: 5 minutes (.084 hours).

    Frequency of Response: Third party disclosure requirement.

    Obligation to Respond: Required to obtain or retain benefits. The statutory authority for this collection is approved under 47 U.S.C. 303, 151-155, 301-609.

    Total Annual Burden: 3,360 hours.

    Annual Cost Burden: No cost.

    Privacy Act Impact Assessment: Yes. Respondents may request materials or information submitted to the Commission be withheld from public inspection under 47 CFR 0.459 of the FCC rules.

    The respondents' telephone numbers are collected in the Commission's Universal Licensing System (ULS) database and are covered under the System of Records Notice (SORN), FCC/WTB-1, “Wireless Services Licensing Records.”

    Nature and Extent of Confidentiality: There is no need for confidentiality with this collection of information except for respondents' telephone numbers which are not made available to the public and are covered under FCC/WTB-1, “Wireless Services Licensing Records.”

    Needs and Uses: The third party disclosure requirement contained in 47 CFR 97.213 consists of posting a photocopy of the amateur station license, a label with the name, address, and telephone number of the station licensee, and the name of at least one authorized control operator in a conspicuous place at the station location. This requirement is necessary so that quick resolution of any harmful interference problems can be identified and to ensure that the station is operating in accordance with the Communications Act of 1934, as amended.

    This information is used by FCC personnel during inspections and investigations to determine who is responsible for the proper operation of the remotely controlled station. In the absence of this third party disclosure requirement, field inspections and investigations related to harmful interference could be severely hampered and needlessly prolonged due to inability to determine the responsible licensee.

    Federal Communications Commission. Marlene H. Dortch, Secretary, Office of the Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22341 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6712-01-P
    FEDERAL DEPOSIT INSURANCE CORPORATION Notice to All Interested Parties of the Termination of the Receivership of 10401—Blue Ridge Savings Bank, Inc.; Asheville, North Carolina

    Notice is hereby given that the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as Receiver for Blue Ridge Savings Bank, Inc., Asheville, North Carolina (“the Receiver”) intends to terminate its receivership for said institution. The FDIC was appointed Receiver of Blue Ridge Savings Bank, Inc. on October 14, 2011. The liquidation of the receivership assets has been completed. To the extent permitted by available funds and in accordance with law, the receiver will be making a final dividend payment to proven creditors.

    Based upon the foregoing, the receiver has determined that the continued existence of the receivership will serve no useful purpose. Consequently, notice is given that the receivership shall be terminated, to be effective no sooner than thirty days after the date of this notice. If any person wishes to comment concerning the termination of the receivership, such comment must be made in writing and sent within thirty days of the date of this notice to: Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Division of Resolutions and Receiverships, Attention: Receivership Oversight Department 34.6, 1601 Bryan Street, Dallas, TX 75201.

    No comments concerning the termination of this receivership will be considered which are not sent within this time frame.

    Dated: October 11, 2017. Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. Robert E. Feldman, Executive Secretary.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22290 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 6714-01-P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Change in Bank Control Notices; Acquisitions of Shares of a Bank or Bank Holding Company

    The notificants listed below have applied under the Change in Bank Control Act (12 U.S.C. 1817(j)) and § 225.41 of the Board's Regulation Y (12 CFR 225.41) to acquire shares of a bank or bank holding company. The factors that are considered in acting on the notices are set forth in paragraph 7 of the Act (12 U.S.C. 1817(j)(7)).

    The notices are available for immediate inspection at the Federal Reserve Bank indicated. The notices also will be available for inspection at the offices of the Board of Governors. Interested persons may express their views in writing to the Reserve Bank indicated for that notice or to the offices of the Board of Governors. Comments must be received not later than November 1, 2017.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago (Colette A. Fried, Assistant Vice President) 230 South LaSalle Street, Chicago, Illinois 60690-1414:

    1. Nathan Halverson, Mason City, Iowa; individually and as co-trustee of the Richard A. Halverson Disclaimer Trust, and as a group acting in concert with Kelli Halverson, Scottsdale, Arizona, and the Richard A. Halverson Disclaimer Trust, Mason City, Iowa, co-trustees Richard A. Halverson and Nathan Halverson, both of Mason City, Iowa; to join Richard A. Halverson as members of the Halverson Family Control Group; to retain voting shares of Farmers State Bancshares, Inc., Mason City, Iowa, and thereby indirectly retain shares of Farmers State Bank, Northwood, Iowa.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, October 11, 2017. Ann Misback, Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22353 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    FEDERAL RESERVE SYSTEM Formations of, Acquisitions by, and Mergers of Bank Holding Companies

    The companies listed in this notice have applied to the Board for approval, pursuant to the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956 (12 U.S.C. 1841 et seq.) (BHC Act), Regulation Y (12 CFR part 225), and all other applicable statutes and regulations to become a bank holding company and/or to acquire the assets or the ownership of, control of, or the power to vote shares of a bank or bank holding company and all of the banks and nonbanking companies owned by the bank holding company, including the companies listed below.

    The applications listed below, as well as other related filings required by the Board, are available for immediate inspection at the Federal Reserve Bank indicated. The applications will also be available for inspection at the offices of the Board of Governors. Interested persons may express their views in writing on the standards enumerated in the BHC Act (12 U.S.C. 1842(c)). If the proposal also involves the acquisition of a nonbanking company, the review also includes whether the acquisition of the nonbanking company complies with the standards in section 4 of the BHC Act (12 U.S.C. 1843). Unless otherwise noted, nonbanking activities will be conducted throughout the United States.

    Unless otherwise noted, comments regarding each of these applications must be received at the Reserve Bank indicated or the offices of the Board of Governors not later than November 13, 2017.

    A. Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond (Adam M. Drimer, Assistant Vice President) 701 East Byrd Street, Richmond, Virginia 23261-4528. Comments can also be sent electronically to or [email protected]:

    1. Howard Bancorp, Inc., Ellicott City, Maryland; to acquire voting shares of First Mariner Bank, Baltimore, Maryland.

    Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, October 11, 2017. Ann Misback, Secretary of the Board.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22354 Filed 10-13-17; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE P
    FEDERAL RETIREMENT THRIFT INVESTMENT BOARD Sunshine Act; Notice of Board Member Meeting: Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board Agenda

    Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board Members' Meeting, October 23, 2017, 8:30 a.m. (In-Person).

    Open Session 1. Approval of the Minutes of the September 18, 2017 Board Members' Meeting 2. Investment Manager Annual Service Review 3. Monthly Reports (a) Participant Activity Report (b) Legislative Report 4. Quarterly Reports (c) Investment Policy (d) Budget Review (e) Audit Status 5. Mid-Year Financial Audit 6. ORM Annual Report 7. OEP Annual Report/Survey 8. Blended Retirement Update 9. IT Update Closed Session

    Information covered under 5 U.S.C. 552b(c)(9)(B).

    Adjourn CONTACT PERSON FOR MORE INFORMATION:

    Kimberly Weaver, Director, Office of External Affairs, (202) 942-1640.

    Dated: October 12, 2017. Megan Grumbine, General Counsel, Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board.
    [FR Doc. 2017-22487 Filed 10-12-17; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 6760-01-P
    FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION Agency Information Collection Activities; Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request AGENCY:

    Federal Trade Commission.

    ACTION:

    Notice and request for comment.

    SUMMARY:

    In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC” or “Commission”) is seeking public comments on its request to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) for a three-year extension of the current PRA clearance for the information collection requirements contained in the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Financial Privacy Rule (GLB Privacy Rule). That clearance expires on October 31, 2017.

    DATES:

    Comments must be received by November 15, 2017.

    ADDRESSES:

    Interested parties may file a comment online or on paper by following the instructions in the Request for Comments part of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below. Write “Privacy Rule: Paperwork Comment: FTC File No. P085405” on your comment, and file your comment online at https://ftcpublic.commentworks.com/ftc/glbfinancialrulepra2 by following the instructions on the web-based form. If you prefer to file your comment on paper, mail your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Suite CC-5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20580, or deliver your comment to the following address: Federal Trade Commission, Office of the Secretary, Constitution Center, 400 7th Street SW., 5th Floor, Suite 5610 (Annex J), Washington, DC 20024.

    Comments on the information collection requirements subject to review under the PRA should additionally be submitted to OMB. If sent by U.S. mail, they should be addressed to Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, Attention: Desk Officer for the Federal Trade Commission, New Executive Office Building, Docket Library, Room 10102, 725 17th Street NW., Washington, DC 20503. Comments sent to OMB by U.S. postal mail-are subject to delays due to heightened security precautions. Thus, comments can also be sent via email to [email protected]

    FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

    Requests for additional information or copies of the propo