[Federal Register Volume 71, Number 177 (Wednesday, September 13, 2006)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 53963-53964]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E6-15213]



========================================================================
Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains regulatory documents 
having general applicability and legal effect, most of which are keyed 
to and codified in the Code of Federal Regulations, which is published 
under 50 titles pursuant to 44 U.S.C. 1510.

The Code of Federal Regulations is sold by the Superintendent of Documents. 
Prices of new books are listed in the first FEDERAL REGISTER issue of each 
week.

========================================================================


Federal Register / Vol. 71, No. 177 / Wednesday, September 13, 2006 / 
Rules and Regulations

[[Page 53963]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

7 CFR Part 301

[Docket No. APHIS-2005-0116]


Mediterranean Fruit Fly; Remove Portions of Los Angeles, San 
Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, From the List of Quarantined 
Areas

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Interim rule and request for comments.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We are amending the Mediterranean fruit fly regulations by 
removing portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa Clara 
Counties, CA, from the list of quarantined areas and by removing 
restrictions on the interstate movement of regulated articles from 
those areas. This action is necessary to relieve restrictions that are 
no longer needed to prevent the spread of Mediterranean fruit fly into 
noninfested areas of the United States. We have determined that the 
Mediterranean fruit fly has been eradicated from these portions of Los 
Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, and that the 
quarantine and restrictions are no longer necessary. These portions of 
Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, were the 
last remaining areas in California quarantined for Mediterranean fruit 
fly. Therefore, as a result of this action, there are no longer any 
areas in the continental United States quarantined for the 
Mediterranean fruit fly.

DATES: This interim rule was effective September 7, 2006. We will 
consider all comments that we receive on or before November 13, 2006.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov, select ``Animal and Plant Health Inspection 
Service'' from the agency drop-down menu, then click ``Submit.'' In the 
Docket ID column, select APHIS-2005-0116 to submit or view public 
comments and to view supporting and related materials available 
electronically. Information on using Regulations.gov, including 
instructions for accessing documents, submitting comments, and viewing 
the docket after the close of the comment period, is available through 
the site's ``User Tips'' link.
     Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Please send four copies 
of your comment (an original and three copies) to Docket No. APHIS-
2005-0116, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-
03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state 
that your comment refers to Docket No. APHIS-2005-0116.
    Reading Room: You may read any comments that we receive on this 
docket in our reading room. The reading room is located in room 1141 of 
the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue, SW., 
Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to 
help you, please call (202) 690-2817 before coming.
    Other Information: Additional information about APHIS and its 
programs is available on the Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. Wayne D. Burnett, National Fruit 
Fly Program Manager, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 134, Riverdale, 
MD 20737-1236; (301) 734-4387.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    The Mediterranean fruit fly (Medfly, Ceratitis capitata 
[Wiedemann]) is one of the world's most destructive pests of numerous 
fruits and vegetables. The Medfly can cause serious economic losses. 
Heavy infestations can cause complete loss of crops, and losses of 25 
to 50 percent are not uncommon. The short life cycle of this pest 
permits the rapid development of serious outbreaks.
    The Mediterranean fruit fly regulations, contained in 7 CFR 301.78 
through 301.78-10 (referred to below as the regulations), restrict the 
interstate movement of regulated articles from quarantined areas to 
prevent the spread of Medfly to noninfested areas of the United States. 
The regulations also designate soil and a large number of fruits, nuts, 
vegetables, and berries as regulated articles.
    In an interim rule effective on February 7, 2006, and published in 
the Federal Register on February 13, 2006 (71 FR 7393-7395, Docket No. 
APHIS-2005-0116), we quarantined portions of Los Angeles, San 
Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, and restricted the interstate 
movement of regulated articles from the quarantined areas.
    Based on trapping surveys conducted by inspectors of California 
State and county agencies and by inspectors of the Animal and Plant 
Health Inspection Service, we have determined that Medfly has been 
eradicated from the quarantined portions of these counties. The last 
finding of Medfly in the Los Angeles and San Bernardino Counties, CA, 
quarantined areas was December 13, 2005, and the last finding of Medfly 
in the Santa Clara County, CA, quarantined area was October 9, 2005.
    Since then, no evidence of Medfly infestation has been found in 
these areas. Based on our experience, we have determined that 
sufficient time has passed without finding additional flies or other 
evidence of infestation to conclude that Medfly no longer exists in Los 
Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA. Therefore, we 
are removing the counties from the list of quarantined areas in Sec.  
301.78-3(c). With the removal of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa 
Clara Counties, CA, from that list, there are no longer any areas in 
the continental United States quarantined for Medfly.

Immediate Action

    Immediate action is warranted to relieve restrictions that are no 
longer necessary. Portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Santa 
Clara Counties, CA, were quarantined due to the possibility that the 
Medfly could be spread from those areas to noninfested areas of the 
United States. Since we have concluded that Medfly no longer exists in 
those areas, immediate action is warranted to remove the quarantine on 
Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and

[[Page 53964]]

Santa Clara Counties, CA, and to relieve the restrictions on the 
interstate movement of regulated articles from those areas. Under these 
circumstances, the Administrator has determined that prior notice and 
opportunity for public comment are contrary to the public interest and 
that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553 for making this action 
effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.
    We will consider comments we receive during the comment period for 
this interim rule (see DATES above). After the comment period closes, 
we will publish another document in the Federal Register. The document 
will include a discussion of any comments we receive and any amendments 
we are making to the rule.

Executive Order 12866 and Regulatory Flexibility Act

    This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12866. For this 
action, the Office of Management and Budget has waived its review under 
Executive Order 12866.
    This action amends the Medfly regulations by removing Los Angeles, 
San Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, from the list of 
quarantined areas.
    County records indicated there are approximately 297 small entities 
that may be affected by the lifting of the quarantine in this interim 
rule. These include 127 yard maintenance firms, 110 fruit sellers, 22 
nurseries, 15 growers, 4 distributors, 4 haulers, 3 certified farmers' 
market, 3 processors, 2 harvesters, 2 packers, 2 recyclers, 1 food 
bank, 1 producer, and 1 swapmeet. These 297 entities comprise less than 
1 percent of the total number of similar entities operating in the 
State of California.
    We expect that the effect of this interim rule on the small 
entities referred to above will be minimal. Small entities located 
within the quarantined area that sell regulated articles do so 
primarily for local intrastate, not interstate, movement, so the 
effect, if any, of this rule on these entities appears likely to be 
minimal. In addition, the effect on any small entities that may move 
regulated articles interstate has been minimized during the quarantine 
period by the availability of various treatments that allow these small 
entities, in most cases, to move regulated articles interstate with 
very little additional cost. Thus, just as the previous interim rule 
establishing the quarantined area in portions of Los Angeles, San 
Bernardino, and Santa Clara Counties, CA, had little effect on the 
small entities in the area, the lifting of the quarantine in the 
current interim rule will also have little effect.
    Under these circumstances, the Administrator of the Animal and 
Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that this action will 
not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities.

Executive Order 12372

    This program/activity is listed in the Catalog of Federal Domestic 
Assistance under No. 10.025 and is subject to Executive Order 12372, 
which requires intergovernmental consultation with State and local 
officials. (See 7 CFR part 3015, subpart V.)

Executive Order 12988

    This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil 
Justice Reform. This rule: (1) Preempts all State and local laws and 
regulations that are inconsistent with this rule; (2) has no 
retroactive effect; and (3) does not require administrative proceedings 
before parties may file suit in court challenging this rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This interim rule contains no information collection or 
recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 
(44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 301

    Agricultural commodities, Plant diseases and pests, Quarantine, 
Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Transportation.

0
Accordingly, we are amending 7 CFR part 301 as follows:

PART 301--DOMESTIC QUARANTINE NOTICES

0
1. The authority citation for part 301 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 7701-7772 and 7781-7786; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, 
and 371.3.
    Section 301.75-15 issued under Sec. 204, Title II, Public Law 
106-113, 113 Stat. 1501A-293; sections 301.75-15 and 301.75-16 
issued under Sec. 203, Title II, Public Law 106-224, 114 Stat. 400 
(7 U.S.C. 1421 note).


0
2. In Sec.  301.78-3, paragraph (c) is revised to read as follows:


Sec.  301.78-3  Quarantined areas.

* * * * *
    (c) The areas described below are designated as quarantined areas: 
There are no areas in the continental United States quarantined for the 
Mediterranean fruit fly.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 7th day of September 2006.
Kevin Shea,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
 [FR Doc. E6-15213 Filed 9-12-06; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-34-P