[Federal Register Volume 69, Number 120 (Wednesday, June 23, 2004)]
[Notices]
[Pages 35067-35071]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 04-14164]


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NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION


Notice of Availability of Model Application Concerning Technical 
Specifications Improvement To Eliminate Requirements to Provide Monthly 
Operating Reports and Occupational Radiation Exposure Reports Using the 
Consolidated Line Item Improvement Process

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Notice of availability.

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SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that the staff of the Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission (NRC) has prepared a model safety evaluation 
(SE), a model no significant hazards consideration (NSHC) 
determination, and a model license amendment application relating to a 
change in the technical specifications (TS) to eliminate requirements 
to provide monthly operating reports and occupational radiation 
exposure reports. The purpose of these models is to permit the NRC to 
efficiently process amendments that propose to incorporate this change 
into plant-specific TS. Licensees of nuclear power reactors to which 
the models apply may request amendments utilizing the model 
application.

DATES: The NRC staff issued a Federal Register notice (69 FR 23542) on 
April 29, 2004, which proposed a model SE and a model NSHC 
determination related to changing plant TSs by eliminating requirements 
to provide monthly operating reports and occupational radiation 
exposure reports. The NRC staff hereby announces that the enclosed 
model SE and NSHC determination may be referenced in plant-specific 
applications. The NRC staff has posted a model application on the NRC 
web site to assist licensees in using the consolidated line item 
improvement process (CLIIP) to incorporate this change. The NRC staff 
can most efficiently consider applications based upon the model 
application if the application is submitted within a year of this 
Federal Register notice.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William Reckley, Mail Stop: O-7D1, 
Division of Licensing Project Management, Office of Nuclear Reactor 
Regulation, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-
0001, telephone 301-415-1323.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    Regulatory Issue Summary 2000-06, ``Consolidated Line Item 
Improvement Process for Adopting Standard Technical Specifications 
Changes for Power Reactors,'' was issued on March 20, 2000. The CLIIP 
is intended to improve the efficiency of NRC licensing processes. This 
is accomplished by processing proposed changes to the standard TSs 
(STS) in a manner that supports subsequent license amendment 
applications. The CLIIP includes an opportunity for the public to 
comment on proposed changes to the STS following a preliminary 
assessment by the NRC staff and finding that the change will likely be 
offered for adoption by licensees. The CLIIP directs the NRC staff to 
evaluate any comments received for a proposed change to the STS and to 
either reconsider the change or to proceed with announcing the 
availability of the change for proposed adoption by licensees. Those 
licensees opting to apply for the subject change to TS are responsible 
for reviewing the staff's evaluation, referencing the applicable 
technical justifications, and providing any necessary plant-specific 
information. Each amendment application made in response to the notice 
of availability will be processed and noticed in accordance with 
applicable rules and NRC procedures.
    This notice involves changes to plant TS to eliminate requirements 
to submit monthly operating reports and occupational radiation exposure 
reports. This proposed change was proposed for incorporation into the 
STS by the industry's Technical Specification Task Force as TSTF-369, 
Revision 1.

Applicability

    This proposed change to eliminate requirements to submit monthly 
operating reports and occupational radiation exposure reports is 
applicable to all nuclear power reactors.
    The CLIIP does not prevent licensees from requesting an alternative 
approach or proposing the changes without referencing the model SE and 
the NSHC. Variations from the approach recommended in this notice may, 
however, require additional review by the NRC staff and may increase 
the time and resources needed for the review.

Public Notices

    In a notice in the Federal Register dated April 29, 2004 (69 FR 
23542), the

[[Page 35068]]

NRC staff requested comment on the use of the CLIIP for proposed 
changes to eliminate the requirements for licensees to submit monthly 
operating reports and occupational radiation exposure reports.
    TSTF-369, as well as the NRC staff's SE and model application, may 
be examined, and/or copied for a fee, at the NRC's Public Document 
Room, located at One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike (first 
floor), Rockville, Maryland. Publicly available records are accessible 
electronically from the ADAMS Public Library component on the NRC Web 
site, (the Electronic Reading Room).
    The NRC staff received several comments providing general support 
for the effort to eliminate the subject reporting requirements. In 
addition, the staff received three comments requesting specific changes 
or clarifications to the model SE included in the notice for comment. 
Each of these comments are addressed below:
    1. The letters from the Nuclear Energy Institute, Tennessee Valley 
Authority, and Strategic Teaming and Resource Sharing (STARS) requested 
that the regulatory commitment to provide operating data by the 21st of 
the month following each calendar quarter be revised to by the last day 
of the month following each calendar quarter. The added days were said 
to be warranted to support the processes associated with consolidated 
data entry by each licensee and the subsequent submitting of a single 
report with the operating data collected for all licensees. The 
proposed change in the reporting schedule is acceptable to the NRC 
staff and the model SE and model application are revised to include a 
regulatory commitment to submit the requested operating data by the 
last day of month following the end of each calendar quarter.
    2. Arizona Public Service (APS) commented that licensees should be 
allowed to either make and control the reporting of the operating data 
as a regulatory commitment or to make a regulatory commitment to 
incorporate and subsequently control the reporting of the operating 
data as part of a licensing document such as the safety analysis report 
or technical requirements manual. The proposal by APS is acceptable to 
the NRC staff and revised wording has been incorporated into the model 
SE and model application.
    3. Exelon Generation Company and AmerGen Energy Company commented 
that the model SE and application should address the requirements in 
many plants-specific TSs to report as part of the monthly operating 
report challenges to pressurizer power operated relief valves or 
pressurizer safety valves for pressurized water reactors and safety/
relief valves for boiling water reactors. A requirement to report such 
challenges within the monthly operating report was included in many 
plants' TS prior to licensees either converting to Revision 2 to the 
STS or otherwise requesting the elimination of the report as part of an 
application adopting the NRC-approved Revision 4 to TSTF-258, ``Changes 
to Section 5.0, Administrative Controls.'' The NRC staff has included a 
paragraph in the model SE to address the adoption of the relevant 
portion of TSTF-258 (i.e., the elimination of the reporting of 
challenges to relief or safety valves) for those plants that have not 
previously removed this requirement. This change simply incorporates 
previously approved wording into the SE, maximizes the usefulness of 
the CLIIP for licensees preparing submittals, and improves the 
efficiency of NRC review of license amendment applications.
    Licensees may reference in their plant-specific applications the 
revised SE, NSHC determination, and environmental assessment provided 
below.

Model Safety Evaluation

U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Office of Nuclear Reactor 
Regulation, Consolidated Line Item Improvement, Technical Specification 
Task Force (TSTF) Change Traveler TSTF-369, Elimination of Requirements 
for Monthly Operating Reports and Occupational Radiation Exposure 
Reports

1.0 Introduction

    By application dated [DATE], [LICENSEE NAME] (the licensee), 
submitted a request for changes to the [PLANT NAME], Technical 
Specifications (TSs) (ADAMS Accession No. MLxxx). The requested change 
would delete TS [5.6.1], ``Occupational Radiation Exposure Report,'' 
and TS [5.6.4], ``Monthly Operating Reports,'' as described in the 
Notice of Availability published in the Federal Register on [DATE ] (xx 
FR yyyyy).

2.0 Regulatory Evaluation

    Section 182a. of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, (the 
``Act'') requires applicants for nuclear power plant operating licenses 
to state TS to be included as part of the license. The Commission's 
regulatory requirements related to the content of TSs are set forth in 
10 CFR 50.36, ``Technical specifications.'' The regulation requires 
that TSs include items in five specific categories, including (1) 
safety limits, limiting safety system settings, and limiting control 
settings; (2) limiting conditions for operation (LCOs); (3) 
surveillance requirements; (4) design features; and (5) administrative 
controls. However, the regulation does not specify the particular 
requirements to be included in a plant's TSs.
    The Commission has provided guidance for the content of TSs in its 
``Final Policy Statement on Technical Specification Improvements for 
Nuclear Power Reactors'' (58 FR 39132, published July 22, 1993), in 
which the Commission indicated that compliance with the Final Policy 
Statement satisfies Section 182a. of the Act. The Final Policy 
Statement identified four criteria to be used in determining whether a 
particular item should be addressed in the TSs as an LCO. The criteria 
were subsequently incorporated into 10 CFR 50.36 (60 FR 36593, 
published July 19, 1995). While the criteria specifically apply to 
LCOs, the Commission indicated that the intent of these criteria may be 
used to identify the optimum set of administrative controls in TSs. 
Addressing administrative controls, 10 CFR 50.36 states that they are 
``the provisions relating to organization and management, procedures, 
recordkeeping, review and audit, and reporting necessary to assure 
operation of the facility in a safe manner.'' The specific content of 
the administrative controls section of the TS is, therefore, related to 
those programs and reports that the Commission deems essential for the 
safe operation of the facility, which are not adequately covered by 
regulations or other regulatory requirements. Accordingly, the staff 
may determine that specific requirements, such as those associated with 
this change, may be removed from the administrative controls in the TS 
if they are not explicitly required by 10 CFR 50.36(c)(5) and are not 
otherwise necessary to obviate the possibility of an abnormal situation 
or event giving rise to an immediate threat to the public health and 
safety.
    The impetus for the monthly operating report (MOR) came from the 
1973-1974 oil embargo. Regulatory Guide 1.16, Revision 4, ``Reporting 
of Operating Information--Appendix A Technical Specifications,'' 
published for comment in August 1975, identifies operating statistics 
and shutdown experience information that was desired in the operating 
report at that time. In the mid-1990s, the NRC staff assessed the 
information that is submitted in the MOR and determined that while some 
of the information was no longer used by the staff, the MOR was the 
only

[[Page 35069]]

source of some data used in the NRC Performance Indicator (PI) Program 
of that time period (see NRC Generic Letter (GL) 97-02, ``Revised 
Contents of the Monthly Operating Report''). Beginning in the late 
1990s, the NRC developed and implemented a major revision to its 
assessment, inspection, and enforcement processes through its Reactor 
Oversight Process (ROP). The ROP uses both plant-level PIs and 
inspections performed by NRC personnel. In conjunction with the 
development of the ROP, the NRC developed the Industry Trends Program 
(ITP). The ITP provides the NRC a means to assess overall industry 
performance using industry level indicators and to report on industry 
trends to various stakeholders (e.g., Congress). Information from the 
ITP is used to assess the NRC's performance related to its goal of 
having ``no statistically significant adverse industry trends in safety 
performance.'' The ITP uses some of the same PIs as the PI Program from 
the mid-1990s and, therefore, the NRC has a continuing use for the data 
provided in MORs. The NRC also uses some data from the MORs to support 
the evaluation of operating experience, licensee event reports, and 
other assessments performed by the staff and its contractors.
    [Optional for licensees adopting TSTF-258: The reporting 
requirements for the MOR include challenges to the ((pressurizer power 
operated relief valves and pressurizer safety valves) or (safety/relief 
valves)). The reporting of challenges to the ((pressurizer power 
operated relief valves and pressurizer safety valves) or (safety/relief 
valves)) was included in TSs based on the guidance in NUREG-0694, 
``[Three Mile Island] TMI-Related Requirements for New Operating 
Licensees.'' The industry proposed and the NRC accepted the elimination 
of the reporting requirements in TS for challenges to ((pressurizer 
power operated relief valves and pressurizer safety valves) or (safety/
relief valves)) in Revision 4 to TSTF-258, ``Changes to Section 5.0, 
Administrative Controls.'' The staff's acceptance of TSTF-258 and 
subsequent approval of plant-specific adoptions of TSTF-258 is based on 
the fact that the information on challenges to relief and safety valves 
is not used in the evaluation of the MOR data, and that the information 
needed by the NRC is adequately addressed by the reporting requirements 
in 10 CFR 50.73, ``Licensee event reports.'']
    Licensees are required by TSs to submit annual occupational 
radiation exposure reports (ORERs) to the NRC. The reports, developed 
in the mid-1970s, supplement the reporting requirements currently 
defined in 10 CFR 20.2206, ``Reports of individual monitoring,'' by 
providing a tabulation of data by work areas and job functions. The NRC 
included data from the ORERs in its annual publication of NUREG-0713, 
``Occupational Radiation Exposure at Commercial Nuclear Power Reactors 
and Other Facilities,'' through the year 1997, but no longer includes 
the data in that or other reports.

3.0 Technical Evaluation

3.1 Monthly Operating Reports

    As previously mentioned, the administrative requirements in TSs are 
reserved for ``the provisions relating to organization and management, 
procedures, recordkeeping, review and audit, and reporting necessary to 
assure operation of the facility in a safe manner.'' The current use of 
the information from the MORs is not related to reporting on or 
confirming the safe operation of specific nuclear power plants. 
Instead, the data is used by the NRC to assess and communicate with 
stakeholders regarding the overall performance of the nuclear industry. 
Data related to PIs for specific plants are reported to the NRC as part 
of the ROP. The NRC staff has determined that the MORs do not meet the 
criteria defined for requirements to be included in the administrative 
section of TSs and the reporting requirement may, therefore, be 
removed.
    Although the MORs do not satisfy the criteria for inclusion in TSs, 
the NRC staff nevertheless has a continuing need to receive the data in 
order to compile its reports on industry trends and to support other 
evaluations of operating experience. In addition, information such as 
plant capacity factors that are reported in the MORs are useful to the 
staff and are frequently asked for by agency stakeholders.
    The NRC staff interacted with licensees, industry organizations, 
and other stakeholders during the development of the Consolidated Data 
Entry (CDE) program (currently being developed and maintained by the 
Institute of Nuclear Power Operation), regarding the use of an industry 
database like CDE to provide data currently obtained from MORs. These 
discussions also involved the related Revision 1 to TSTF-369, ``Removal 
of Monthly Operating Report and Occupational Radiation Exposure 
Report.'' As described in Section 4 of this safety evaluation, the 
licensee is making a regulatory commitment to continue to provide the 
data identified in GL 97-02, following the removal of the TS 
requirement to submit MORs, and will, therefore, continue to meet the 
needs of the NRC staff for the ITP and other evaluations. The use of an 
industry database such as CDE is more efficient and cost-effective for 
both the NRC and licensees than would be having the NRC staff obtain 
the needed information from other means currently available. Should a 
licensee fail to satisfy the regulatory commitment to voluntarily 
provide the information, the NRC could obtain the information through 
its inspection program (similar to the process described in NRC 
Inspection Procedure 71150, ``Discrepant or Unreported Performance 
Indicator Data'') with the licensee being charged for the time spent by 
the NRC staff.
    The only significant changes resulting from the adoption of TSTF-
369 are that the information will be provided quarterly instead of 
monthly (although the operating data will still be divided by month) 
and the form of the reporting will be from a consolidated database such 
as CDE instead of in correspondence from individual licensees. The 
change of reporting frequency to quarterly has some advantages for both 
the NRC staff and licensees, since it will coincide with the collection 
and submission of the ROP PI data. In terms of the specific method used 
to transmit the data to the NRC, the licensee has committed (see 
Section 4.0) to provide data identified in GL 97-02 on a quarterly 
basis. The NRC staff believes that the most efficient process for 
licensees and the NRC will be for all licensees to use a system such as 
CDE. Such systems have advantages in terms of improved data entry, data 
checking, and data verification and validation. The NRC will recognize 
efficiency gains by having the data from all plants reported using the 
same computer software and format. Although the data may be transmitted 
to the NRC from an industry organization maintaining a database such as 
CDE, the licensee provides the data for the system and remains 
responsible for the accuracy of the data submitted to the NRC for its 
plant(s). The public will continue to have access to the data through 
official agency records accessible on the Agencywide Documents Access 
and Management System (ADAMS).
    [Optional for licensees adopting TSTF-258: The content requirements 
for the MOR currently include information on challenges to the 
((pressurizer power operated relief valves and pressurizer safety 
valves) or (safety/relief valves)). As discussed in the previous 
section, the NRC staff has documented in its approval of TSTF-

[[Page 35070]]

258 and related plant-specific amendments that the reporting of 
challenges to ((pressurizer power operated relief valves and 
pressurizer safety valves) or (safety/relief valves)) may be removed 
from TSs since the information needed by the NRC is adequately 
addressed by the reporting requirements in 10 CFR 50.73, ``Licensee 
event reports.'' The NRC staff finds it acceptable to remove the 
requirement to report challenges to ((pressurizer power operated relief 
valves and pressurizer safety valves) or (safety/relief valves)) along 
with the other reporting requirements associated with the MOR.]

3.2 Occupational Radiation Exposure Reports

    The information that the NRC staff needs regarding occupational 
doses is provided by licensees in the reports required under 10 CFR 
part 20. The data from the part 20 reports are sufficient to support 
the NRC trending programs, radiation related studies, and preparation 
of reports such as NUREG-0713. Accordingly, the NRC's limited use of 
the ORER submitted pursuant to the existing TS requirements no longer 
warrants the regulatory burden imposed on licensees. Therefore, the 
staff finds it acceptable that TS [5.6.1] is being deleted and the ORER 
will no longer be submitted by the licensee.

    [Note: For stations with both boiling and pressurized water 
reactors (i.e., Salem/Hope Creek and Millstone) and for stations 
with both operating and shutdown reactors (e.g., Dresden, Indian 
Point, Millstone, San Onofre, Three Mile Island), the NRC staff uses 
information provided in the ORERs to apportion the doses reported 
under 10 CFR part 20 to the different categories of reactors at a 
single site. The licensees for facilities with different reactor 
types at a single site and those having both operating and shutdown 
reactors at a single site will include in their applications a 
regulatory commitment to provide information to the NRC annually 
(e.g., with their annual submittal in accordance with 10 CFR 
20.2206) to support the apportionment of the station doses to each 
type of reactor and to differentiate between operating and shutdown 
units. The data will provide the summary distribution of annual 
whole body doses as presented in Appendix B of NUREG-0713 for each 
reactor type and for operating and shutdown units.]

    [The licensee's application included editorial and formatting 
changes such as the renumbering of TS sections to reflect the deletion 
of the sections related to MORs and ORERs. The NRC staff has reviewed 
these changes and found that they do not revise substantive technical 
or administrative requirements, and are acceptable.]

4.0 Verifications and Commitments

    In order to efficiently process incoming license amendment 
applications, the NRC staff requested each licensee requesting the 
changes addressed by TSTF-369 using the CLIIP to address the following 
plant-specific regulatory commitment.
    1. Each licensee should make a regulatory commitment to provide to 
the NRC using an industry database the operating data (for each 
calender month) that is described in Generic Letter 97-02 ``Revised 
Contents of the Monthly Operating Report,'' by the last day of the 
month following the end of each calendar quarter. The regulatory 
commitment will be based on use of an industry database (e.g., the 
industry's Consolidated Data Entry (CDE) program, currently being 
developed and maintained by the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations).
    The licensee has made a regulatory commitment to provide the 
requested data via an industry database (i.e., the CDE) by the end of 
the month following each calendar quarter (i.e., within seven to ten 
days after the submission of Pl data associated with the ROP). 
[optional: The licensee's regulatory commitment included the 
incorporation of the criteria for reporting operational data to the--
(e.g., safety analysis report, technical requirements manual).]
    [2. Each licensee [(operating different reactor types at a single 
site) or (possessing both operating and shutdown reactors at a single 
site)] will include in its application a regulatory commitment to 
provide information to the NRC annually (e.g., with its annual 
submittal in accordance with 10 CFR 20.2206) to support the 
apportionment of station doses [(to each type of reactor) or (to 
differentiate between operating and shutdown units)]. The data will 
provide the summary distribution of annual whole body doses as 
presented in Appendix B of NUREG-0713 for each reactor type and for 
operating and shutdown units.
    The licensee has made a regulatory commitment to provide 
information to the NRC annually to support the apportionment of the 
station doses to each type of reactor and to differentiate between 
operating and shutdown units.]
    The NRC staff finds that reasonable controls for the implementation 
and for subsequent evaluation of proposed changes pertaining to the 
above regulatory commitment(s) can be provided by the licensee's 
administrative processes, including its commitment management program. 
The NRC staff has agreed that Nuclear Energy Institute 99-04, Revision 
0, ``Guidelines for Managing NRC Commitment Changes,'' provides 
reasonable guidance for the control of regulatory commitments made to 
the NRC staff (see Regulatory Issue Summary 2000-17, ``Managing 
Regulatory Commitments Made by Power Reactor Licensees to the NRC 
Staff,'' dated September 21, 2000). The NRC staff notes that this 
amendment establishes a voluntary reporting system for the operating 
data that is similar to the system established for the ROP Pl program. 
Should the licensee choose to incorporate a regulatory commitment into 
the final safety analysis report or other document with established 
regulatory controls, the associated regulations would define the 
appropriate change-control and reporting requirements.

5.0 State Consultation

    In accordance with the Commission's regulations, the [STATE] State 
official was notified of the proposed issuance of the amendments. The 
State official had [(1) no comments or (2) the following comments--with 
subsequent disposition by the staff].

6.0 Environmental Consideration

    The amendment relates to changes in recordkeeping, reporting, or 
administrative procedures or requirements. The Commission has 
previously issued a proposed finding that the amendment involves no 
significant hazards consideration, and there has been no public comment 
on such finding (FR citation and date). Accordingly, the amendment 
meets the eligibility criteria for categorical exclusion set forth in 
10 CFR 51.22(c)(10). Pursuant to 10 CFR 51.22(b), no environmental 
impact statement or environmental assessment need be prepared in 
connection with the issuance of the amendment.

7.0 Conclusion

    The Commission has concluded, based on the considerations discussed 
above, that (1) there is reasonable assurance that the health and 
safety of the public will not be endangered by operation in the 
proposed manner, (2) such activities will be conducted in compliance 
with the commission's regulations, and (3) the issuance of the 
amendments will not be inimical to the common defense and security or 
to the health and safety of the public.

Model Proposed No Significant Hazards Consideration Determination

    Description of amendment request: The requested change would delete 
Technical Specification (TS) [5.6.1],

[[Page 35071]]

``Occupational Radiation Exposure Report,'' and [5.6.4], ``Monthly 
Operating Reports,'' as described in the Notice of Availability 
published in Federal Register on [DATE] (xx FR yyyyy).
    Basis for proposed no significant hazards consideration 
determination: As required by 10 CFR 50.91(a), an analysis of the issue 
of no significant hazards consideration is presented below:
    1. Does the proposed change involve a significant increase in the 
probability or consequences of an accident previously evaluated?
    Response: No.
    The proposed change eliminates the Technical Specifications (TSs) 
reporting requirements to provide a monthly operating report of 
shutdown experience and operating statistics if the equivalent data is 
submitted using an industry electronic database. It also eliminates the 
TS reporting requirement for an annual occupational radiation exposure 
report, which provides information beyond that specified in NRC 
regulations. The proposed change involves no changes to plant systems 
or accident analyses. As such, the change is administrative in nature 
and does not affect initiators of analyzed events or assumed mitigation 
of accidents or transients. Therefore, the proposed change does not 
involve a significant increase in the probability or consequences of an 
accident previously evaluated.
    2. Does the proposed change create the possibility of a new or 
different kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated?
    Response: No.
    The proposed change does not involve a physical alteration of the 
plant, add any new equipment, or require any existing equipment to be 
operated in a manner different from the present design. Therefore, the 
proposed change does not create the possibility of a new or different 
kind of accident from any accident previously evaluated.
    3. Does the proposed change involve a significant reduction in a 
margin of safety?
    Response: No.
    This is an administrative change to reporting requirements of plant 
operating information and occupational radiation exposure data, and has 
no effect on plant equipment, operating practices or safety analyses 
assumptions. For these reasons, the proposed change does not involve a 
significant reduction in the margin of safety.
    Based upon the reasoning presented above, the requested change does 
not involve a significant hazards consideration.

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 16th day of June 2004.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Robert A Gramm,
Chief, Section 1, Project Directorate IV, Division of Licensing Project 
Management, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation.
[FR Doc. 04-14164 Filed 6-22-04; 8:45 am]
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