[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 243 (Monday, December 20, 2010)]
[Unknown Section]
[Pages 79459-79708]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-30473]


[[Page 79459]]


                                                                DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
1                Wholesale Pork Reporting Program                                                                         0581-AD07       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
2                National Dairy Promotion and Research Program; Dairy Import Assessments, DA-08-0050                         0581-AC87 Final Rule Stage
3                Animal Welfare; Regulations and Standards for Birds                                                         0579-AC02    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
4                Plant Pest Regulations; Update of General Provisions                                                        0579-AC98    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
5                Importation of Live Dogs                                                                                 0579-AD23       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
6                Animal Disease Traceability                                                                              0579-AD24       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
7                Importation of Plants for Planting; Establishing a New Category of Plants for Planting Not                  0579-AC03 Final Rule Stage
                 Authorized for Importation Pending Pest Risk Analysis
8                Multi-Family Housing (MFH) Reinvention                                                                      0575-AC13 Final Rule Stage
9                Enforcement of the Packers and Stockyards Act                                                            0580-AB07    Final Rule Stage
10               Eligibility, Certification, and Employment and Training Provisions of the Food, Conservation, and        0584-AD87       Proposed Rule
                 Energy Act of 2008                                                                                                               Stage
11               Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program: Farm Bill of 2008 Retailer Sanctions                          0584-AD88       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
12               Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program                                                                        0584-AD96       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
13               Child and Adult Care Food Program: Improving Management and Program Integrity                               0584-AC24 Final Rule Stage
14               Direct Certification of Children in Food Stamp Households and Certification of Homeless, Migrant,        0584-AD60    Final Rule Stage
                 and Runaway Children for Free Meals in the NSLP, SBP, and SMP
15               Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): Revisions in the WIC      0584-AD77    Final Rule Stage
                 Food Packages
16               Egg Products Inspection Regulations                                                                         0583-AC58    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
17               New Poultry Slaughter Inspection                                                                         0583-AD32       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
18               Mandatory Inspection of Catfish and Catfish Products                                                     0583-AD36       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
19               Electronic Imported Product Inspection Applications; Electronic Foreign Imported Product and             0583-AD39       Proposed Rule
                 Foreign Establishment Certifications; Deletion of Streamlined Inspection Procedures for Canadian                                 Stage
                 Product
20               Electronic Export Application and Certification as a Reimbursable Service and Flexibility in the         0583-AD41       Proposed Rule
                 Requirements for Official Export Inspection Marks, Devices, and Certificates                                                     Stage
21               Performance Standards for the Production of Processed Meat and Poultry Products; Control of                 0583-AC46 Final Rule Stage
                 Listeria Monocytogenes in Ready-To-Eat Meat and Poultry Products
22               Nutrition Labeling of Single-Ingredient Products and Ground or Chopped Meat and Poultry Products            0583-AC60 Final Rule Stage
23               Notification, Documentation, and Recordkeeping Requirements for Inspected Establishments                 0583-AD34    Final Rule Stage
24               Federal-State Interstate Shipment Cooperative Inspection Program                                         0583-AD37    Final Rule Stage
25               Value-Added Producer Grant Program                                                                       0570-AA79    Final Rule Stage
26               Rural Broadband Access Loans and Loan Guarantees                                                            0572-AC06 Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                 DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
27               Designation of Critical Habitat for the North Atlantic Right Whale                                       0648-AY54       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
28               Certification of Nations Whose Fishing Vessels Are Engaged in Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated       0648-AV51    Final Rule Stage
                 Fishing or Bycatch of Protected Living Marine Resources

[[Page 79460]]

 
29               Critical Habitat Designation for Cook Inlet Beluga Whale Under the Endangered Species Act                0648-AX50    Final Rule Stage
30               Fisheries Off West Coast States; Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery; Amendments 20 and 21; Trawl           0648-AY68    Final Rule Stage
                 Rationalization Program
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                  DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
31               Voluntary Education Programs                                                                             0790-AI50    Final Rule Stage
32               TRICARE; Reimbursement of Sole Community Hospitals                                                       0720-AB41       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                 DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
33               Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as Amended                                                 1840-AD05       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
34               Program Integrity: Gainful Employment--Measures                                                          1840-AD06    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                  DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
35               Energy Efficiency Standards for Clothes Dryers and Room Air Conditioners                                 1904-AA89       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
36               Energy Efficiency Standards for Residential Central Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps                      1904-AB47       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
37               Energy Efficiency Standards for Fluorescent Lamp Ballasts                                                1904-AB50       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
38               Energy Efficiency Standards for Residential Furnaces                                                        1904-AC06    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
39               Energy Efficiency Standards for Manufactured Housing                                                        1904-AC11    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
40               Energy Efficiency Standards for Residential Refrigerators, Refrigerator-Freezers, and Freezers           1904-AB79    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                         DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
41               Modifications to the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Enforcement Rules Under the Health Information         0991-AB57    Final Rule Stage
                 Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act
42               Transparency Reporting                                                                                   0950-AA07       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
43               Rate Review                                                                                              0950-AA03    Final Rule Stage
44               Uniform Explanation of Benefits, Coverage Facts, and Standardized Definitions                            0950-AA08    Final Rule Stage
45               Electronic Submission of Data From Studies Evaluating Human Drugs and Biologics                             0910-AC52    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
46               Unique Device Identification                                                                             0910-AG31       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
47               Cigarette Warning Label Statements                                                                       0910-AG41       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79461]]

 
48               Food Labeling: Nutrition Labeling for Food Sold in Vending Machines                                      0910-AG56       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
49               Food Labeling: Nutrition Labeling of Standard Menu Items in Chain Restaurants                            0910-AG57       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
50               Infant Formula: Current Good Manufacturing Practices; Quality Control Procedures; Notification           0910-AF27    Final Rule Stage
                 Requirements; Records and Reports; and Quality Factors
51               Medical Device Reporting; Electronic Submission Requirements                                             0910-AF86    Final Rule Stage
52               Electronic Registration and Listing for Devices                                                          0910-AF88    Final Rule Stage
53               Requirements for Long-Term Care Facilities: Notification of Facility Closure (CMS-3230-IFC)              0938-AQ09       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
54               Medicare Shared Savings Program: Accountable Care Organizations (CMS-1345-P)                             0938-AQ22       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
55               Proposed Changes to the Hospital Inpatient Prospective Payment Systems for Acute Care Hospitals and      0938-AQ24       Proposed Rule
                 FY 2012 Rates and to the Long-Term Care Hospital PPS and RY 2012 Rates (CMS-1518-P)                                              Stage
56               Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule and Part B for CY 2012 (CMS-1524-P)       0938-AQ25       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
57               Changes to the Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System and Ambulatory Surgical Center             0938-AQ26       Proposed Rule
                 Payment System for CY 2012 (CMS-1525-P)                                                                                          Stage
58               Civil Money Penalties for Nursing Homes (CMS-2435-F)                                                     0938-AQ02    Final Rule Stage
59               Designation Renewal of Head Start Grantees                                                                  0970-AC44    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
60               Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Enrollment and Eligibility Rules Under the             0985-AA07       Proposed Rule
                 Affordable Care Act                                                                                                              Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                             DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
61               Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Program                                                              1601-AA52       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
62               Collection of Alien Biometric Data Upon Exit From the United States at Air and Sea Ports of              1601-AA34    Final Rule Stage
                 Departure; United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology Program (US-VISIT)
63               Asylum and Withholding Definitions                                                                       1615-AA41       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
64               Registration Requirement for Petitioners Seeking to File H-1B Petitions on Behalf of Aliens Subject      1615-AB71       Proposed Rule
                 to Numerical Limitations                                                                                                         Stage
65               Exception to the Persecution Bar for Asylum, Refugee, and Temporary Protected Status, and                1615-AB89       Proposed Rule
                 Withholding of Removal                                                                                                           Stage
66               New Classification for Victims of Severe Forms of Trafficking in Persons; Eligibility for T              1615-AA59    Final Rule Stage
                 Nonimmigrant Status
67               Adjustment of Status to Lawful Permanent Resident for Aliens in T and U Nonimmigrant Status              1615-AA60    Final Rule Stage
68               New Classification for Victims of Criminal Activity; Eligibility for the ``U'' Nonimmigrant Status       1615-AA67    Final Rule Stage
69               E-2 Nonimmigrant Status for Aliens in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands With Long-        1615-AB75    Final Rule Stage
                 Term Investor Status
70               Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Transitional Worker Classification                          1615-AB76    Final Rule Stage
71               Application of Immigration Regulations to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands               1615-AB77    Final Rule Stage
72               Outer Continental Shelf Activities                                                                       1625-AA18       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79462]]

 
73               Inspection of Towing Vessels                                                                             1625-AB06       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
74               Assessment Framework and Organizational Restatement Regarding Preemption for Certain Regulations         1625-AB32       Proposed Rule
                 Issued by the Coast Guard                                                                                                        Stage
75               Updates to Maritime Security                                                                             1625-AB38       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
76               Standards for Living Organisms in Ships' Ballast Water Discharged in U.S. Waters                         1625-AA32    Final Rule Stage
77               Importer Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements                                             1651-AA70    Final Rule Stage
78               Changes to the Visa Waiver Program To Implement the Electronic System for Travel Authorization           1651-AA72    Final Rule Stage
                 (ESTA) Program
79               Establishment of Global Entry Program                                                                    1651-AA73    Final Rule Stage
80               Implementation of the Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver Program                                                      1651-AA77    Final Rule Stage
81               Large Aircraft Security Program, Other Aircraft Operator Security Program, and Airport Operator          1652-AA53       Proposed Rule
                 Security Program                                                                                                                 Stage
82               Public Transportation and Passenger Railroads--Security Training of Employees                            1652-AA55       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
83               Freight Railroads--Security Training of Employees                                                        1652-AA57       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
84               Over-the-Road Buses--Security Training of Employees                                                      1652-AA59       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
85               Aircraft Repair Station Security                                                                         1652-AA38    Final Rule Stage
86               Air Cargo Screening                                                                                      1652-AA64    Final Rule Stage
87               Continued Detention of Aliens Subject to Final Orders of Removal                                         1653-AA60       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
88               Continued Detention of Aliens Subject to Final Orders of Removal                                         1653-AA13    Final Rule Stage
89               Extending Period for Optional Practical Training by 17 Months for F-1 Nonimmigrant Students With         1653-AA56    Final Rule Stage
                 STEM Degrees and Expanding the CAP-GAP Relief for All F-1 Students With Pending H-1B Petitions
90               Update of FEMA's Public Assistance Regulations                                                           1660-AA51       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                       DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
91               Title I Energy Retrofit Property Improvement Loans (FR-5445)                                             2502-AI93       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
92               Housing Counseling: New Program Requirements (FR-5446)                                                   2502-AI94       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                  DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
93               National Standards to Prevent, Detect, and Respond to Prison Rape                                        1105-AB34       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                                   DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
94               Construction Contractor Affirmative Action Requirements                                                  1250-AA01       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79463]]

 
95               Persuader Agreements: Employer and Labor Relations Consultant Reporting Under the LMRDA                  1245-AA03       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
96               Right To Know Under the Fair Labor Standards Act                                                         1235-AA04       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
97               Labor Certification Process and Enforcement for Temporary Employment in Occupations Other Than           1205-AB58       Proposed Rule
                 Agriculture or Registered Nursing in the United States (H-2B Workers)                                                            Stage
98               Equal Employment Opportunity in Apprenticeship and Training, Amendment of Regulations                    1205-AB59       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
99               Lifetime Income Options for Participants and Beneficiaries in Retirement Plans                           1210-AB33       Prerule Stage
100              Definition of ``Fiduciary''                                                                              1210-AB32       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
101              Respirable Crystalline Silica Standard                                                                   1219-AB36       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
102              Lowering Miners' Exposure to Coal Mine Dust, Including Continuous Personal Dust Monitors                 1219-AB64       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
103              Safety and Health Management Programs for Mines                                                          1219-AB71       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
104              Pattern of Violations                                                                                    1219-AB73       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
105              Maintenance of Incombustible Content of Rock Dust in Underground Coal Mines                              1219-AB76       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
106              Proximity Detection Systems for Underground Mines                                                        1219-AB65    Final Rule Stage
107              Infectious Diseases                                                                                         1218-AC46    Prerule Stage
108              Injury and Illness Prevention Program                                                                       1218-AC48    Prerule Stage
109              Backing Operations                                                                                          1218-AC52    Prerule Stage
110              Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica                                                              1218-AB70       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
111              Occupational Injury and Illness Recording and Reporting Requirements--Modernizing OSHA's Reporting          1218-AC49    Proposed Rule
                 System                                                                                                                           Stage
112              Hazard Communication                                                                                        1218-AC20 Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                              DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
113              Enhancing Airline Passenger Protections--Part 2                                                          2105-AD92    Final Rule Stage
114              Qualification, Service, and Use of Crewmembers and Aircraft Dispatchers                                  2120-AJ00       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
115              Air Ambulance and Commercial Helicopter Operations; Safety Initiatives and Miscellaneous Amendments      2120-AJ53       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
116              Flight and Duty Time Limitations and Rest Requirements                                                   2120-AJ58    Final Rule Stage
117              Carrier Safety Fitness Determination                                                                     2126-AB11       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
118              Electronic On-Board Recorders and Hours of Service Supporting Documents                                  2126-AB20       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
119              Hours of Service                                                                                         2126-AB26       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
120              Drivers of Commercial Vehicles: Restricting the Use of Cellular Phones                                   2126-AB29       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
121              National Registry of Certified Medical Examiners                                                         2126-AA97    Final Rule Stage
122              Passenger Car and Light Truck Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards MYs 2017 and Beyond               2127-AK79       Prerule Stage
123              Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 111, Rearview Mirrors                                          2127-AK43       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79464]]

 
124              Commercial Medium- and Heavy-Duty On-Highway Vehicles and Work Truck Fuel Efficiency Standards           2127-AK74       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
125              Ejection Mitigation                                                                                      2127-AK23    Final Rule Stage
126              Hours of Service: Passenger Train Employees                                                                 2130-AC15    Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
127              Major Capital Investment Projects                                                                        2132-AB02       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
128              Hazardous Materials: Limiting the Use of Mobile Telephones by Highway                                    2137-AE65       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
129              Hazardous Materials: Limiting the Use of Electronic Devices by Highway                                   2137-AE63    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                             ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
130              Review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Carbon Monoxide                                 2060-AI43       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
131              Review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Particulate Matter                              2060-AO47       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
132              Review of the Secondary National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Oxides of Nitrogen and Oxides of      2060-AO72       Proposed Rule
                 Sulfur                                                                                                                           Stage
133              National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Coal- and Oil-Fired Electric Utility        2060-AP52       Proposed Rule
                 Steam Generating Units                                                                                                           Stage
134              Control of Greenhouse Gas Emissions From Medium and Heavy-Duty Vehicles                                  2060-AP61       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
135              Review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Lead                                            2060-AQ44       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
136              NPDES Electronic Reporting Rule                                                                          2020-AA47       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
137              Regulations To Facilitate Compliance With the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act        2070-AJ32       Proposed Rule
                 by Producers of Plant-Incorporated Protectants (PIPs)                                                                            Stage
138              Mercury; Regulation of Use in Certain Products                                                           2070-AJ46       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
139              Nanoscale Materials; Reporting Under TSCA Section 8(a)                                                   2070-AJ54       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
140              Nanoscale Materials; Significant New Use Rule (SNUR)                                                     2070-AJ67       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
141              Revisions to EPA's Rule on Protections for Subjects in Human Research Involving Pesticides               2070-AJ76       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
142              Hazardous Waste Management Systems: Identification and Listing of Hazardous Waste: Carbon Dioxide        2050-AG60       Proposed Rule
                 (CO2) Injectate in Geological Sequestration Activities                                                                           Stage
143              Financial Responsibility Requirements Under CERCLA Section 108(b) for Classes of Facilities in the       2050-AG61       Proposed Rule
                 Hard Rock Mining Industry                                                                                                        Stage
144              NPDES Permit Requirements for Municipal Sanitary and Combined Sewer Collection Systems, Municipal        2040-AD02       Proposed Rule
                 Satellite Collection Systems, Sanitary Sewer Overflows, and Peak Excess Flow Treatment Facilities                                Stage
145              Criteria and Standards for Cooling Water Intake Structures                                               2040-AE95       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
146              Stormwater Regulations Revision To Address Discharges From Developed Sites                               2040-AF13       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79465]]

 
147              National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit Regulations for New Dischargers and       2040-AF17       Proposed Rule
                 the Appropriate Use of Offsets With Regard to Water Quality Permitting                                                           Stage
148              Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations (CAFO) Information Collection Request Rule                        2040-AF22       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
149              National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Area Sources: Industrial, Commercial,       2060-AM44    Final Rule Stage
                 and Institutional Boilers
150              Transport Rule (CAIR Replacement Rule)                                                                   2060-AP50    Final Rule Stage
151              Revision to Pb Ambient Air Monitoring Requirements                                                       2060-AP77    Final Rule Stage
152              Reconsideration of the 2008 Ozone Primary and Secondary National Ambient Air Quality Standards           2060-AP98    Final Rule Stage
153              Revisions to Motor Vehicle Fuel Economy Label                                                            2060-AQ09    Final Rule Stage
154              National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Major Sources: Industrial, Commercial,      2060-AQ25    Final Rule Stage
                 and Institutional Boilers and Process Heaters
155              Lead; Clearance and Clearance Testing Requirements for the Renovation, Repair, and Painting Program      2070-AJ57    Final Rule Stage
156              Identification of Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials That Are Solid Wastes                                2050-AG44    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                         EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
157              Regulations To Implement the Equal Employment Provisions of the Americans With Disabilities Act          3046-AA85    Final Rule Stage
                 Amendments Act
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                      NATIONAL ARCHIVES AND RECORDS ADMINISTRATION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
158              Office of Government Information Services                                                                3095-AB62       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
159              Declassification of National Security Information                                                        3095-AB64       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                              SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
160              Small Business Jobs Act: Multiple Award Contracts and Small Business Set-Asides                          3245-AG20       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
161              Small Business Size Regulations; (8)a Business Development/Small Disadvantaged Business Status           3245-AF53    Final Rule Stage
                 Determination
162              Small Business Jobs Act: 504 Loan Program Debt Refinancing                                               3245-AG17    Final Rule Stage
163              Small Business Jobs Act: Small Business Intermediary Lending Pilot Program                               3245-AG18    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                             SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
164              Revised Medical Criteria for Evaluating Respiratory System Disorders (859P)                              0960-AF58       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
165              Revised Medical Criteria for Evaluating Hematological Disorders (974P)                                   0960-AF88       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage

[[Page 79466]]

 
166              Revised Medical Criteria for Evaluating Endocrine System Disorders (436P)                                0960-AD78    Final Rule Stage
167              Revised Medical Criteria for Evaluating Mental Disorders (886P)                                          0960-AF69    Final Rule Stage
168              Reestablishing Uniform National Disability Adjudication Provisions (3502F)                               0960-AG80    Final Rule Stage
169              Amendments to Regulations Regarding Major Life-Changing Events Affecting Income-Related Monthly          0960-AH06    Final Rule Stage
                 Adjustments Amounts to Medicare Part B Premiums (3574F)
170              Amendments to Regulations Regarding Withdrawals of Applications and Voluntary Suspension of              0960-AH07    Final Rule Stage
                 Benefits (3573I)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                           CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
171              Testing, Certification, and Labeling of Certain Consumer Products                                           3041-AC71 Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                            NATIONAL INDIAN GAMING COMMISSION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
172              Tribal Background Investigation Submission Requirements and Timing                                       3141-AA15       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
173              Class II and Class III Minimum Internal Control Standards                                                3141-AA27       Proposed Rule
                                                                                                                                                  Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


                                                              POSTAL REGULATORY COMMISSION
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                                                        Regulation
   Sequence                                                     Title                                                   Identifier     Rulemaking Stage
    Number                                                                                                                Number
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
174              Periodic Reporting Exceptions                                                                            3211-AA06    Final Rule Stage
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[FR Doc. 2010-30473 Filed 12-17-10;8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6820-27-S

<###DOC>

[[Page 79467]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE (USDA)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
USDA's regulatory efforts in the coming year will be focused on 
achieving the Department's goals identified in the Department's 
Strategic Plan for 2010 to 2015. To assist the country in addressing 
today's challenges, USDA established the following goals:
 Assist rural communities to create prosperity so they are 
            self-sustaining, re-populating, and economically thriving. 
            USDA is the leading advocate for rural America. The 
            Department supports rural communities and enhances quality 
            of life for rural residents by improving their economic 
            opportunities, community infrastructure, environmental 
            health, and the sustainability of agricultural production. 
            The common goal is to help create thriving rural 
            communities where people want to live and raise families, 
            and where children have economic opportunities and a bright 
            future.
 Ensure that all of America's children have access to safe, 
            nutritious, and balanced meals. A plentiful supply of safe 
            and nutritious food is essential to the well-being of every 
            family and the healthy development of every child in 
            America. USDA provides nutrition assistance to children and 
            low-income people who need it and works to improve the 
            healthy eating habits of all Americans, especially 
            children. In addition, the Department safeguards the 
            quality and wholesomeness of meat, poultry, and egg 
            products and addresses and prevents loss and damage from 
            pests and disease outbreaks.
 Ensure our national forests and private working lands are 
            conserved, restored, and made more resilient to climate 
            change, while enhancing our water resources. America's 
            prosperity is inextricably linked to the health of our 
            lands and natural resources. Forests, farms, ranches, and 
            grasslands offer enormous environmental benefits as a 
            source of clean air, clean and abundant water, and wildlife 
            habitat. These lands generate economic value by supporting 
            the vital agriculture and forestry sectors, attracting 
            tourism and recreation visitors, sustaining green jobs, and 
            producing ecosystem services, food, fiber, timber and non-
            timber products, and energy. They are also of immense 
            social importance, enhancing rural quality of life, 
            sustaining scenic and culturally important landscapes, and 
            providing opportunities to engage in outdoor activity and 
            reconnect with the land.
 Help America promote agricultural production and biotechnology 
            exports as America works to increase food security. A 
            productive agricultural sector is critical to increasing 
            global food security. For many crops, a substantial portion 
            of domestic production is bound for overseas markets. USDA 
            helps American farmers and ranchers use efficient, 
            sustainable production, biotechnology, and other emergent 
            technologies to enhance food security around the world and 
            find export markets for their products.
Important regulatory activities supporting the accomplishment of these 
goals in 2011 will include the following:
 Rural Development and Renewable Energy. USDA priority 
            regulatory actions for the Rural Development mission will 
            be to finalize regulations for bioenergy programs, 
            including the Biorefinery Assistance Program. While USDA 
            utilized notices of funding availability to implement many 
            of these programs in fiscal years 2009 and 2010, 
            regulations are required for permanent implementation. 
            Access to affordable broadband to all rural Americans is 
            another priority. USDA will finalize reform of its on-going 
            broadband access program through an interim rule. Rural 
            Development will utilize comments received from the 
            proposed rule, address statutory changes required by the 
            2008 Farm Bill, and incorporate lessons learned from 
            implementing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 
            program to develop the interim rule.
 USDA will continue to promote sustainable economic opportunities to 
            revitalize rural communities through the purchase and use 
            of renewable, environmentally friendly biobased products 
            through its BioPreferred Program. USDA will continue to 
            designate groups of biobased products to receive 
            procurement preference from Federal agencies and 
            contractors. In addition, USDA will finalize a rule 
            establishing the Voluntary Labeling Program for biobased 
            products.
 Nutrition Assistance. As changes are made to the nutrition 
            assistance programs, USDA will work to foster actions that 
            expand access to program benefits, improve program 
            integrity, improve diets and healthy eating through 
            nutrition education, and promote physical activity 
            consistent with the national effort to reduce obesity. In 
            support of these activities in 2011, the Food and Nutrition 
            Service (FNS) will propose a rule updating nutrition 
            standards in the school meals program, finalize a rule 
            updating the WIC food packages, and establish permanent 
            rules for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program. FNS will 
            continue to work to implement rules that minimize 
            participant and vendor fraud in its nutrition assistance 
            programs.
 Food Safety. In the area of food safety, USDA will continue to 
            develop science-based regulations that improve the safety 
            of meat, poultry, and processed egg products in the least 
            burdensome and most cost-effective manner. Regulations will 
            be revised to address emerging food safety challenges, 
            streamlined to remove excessively prescriptive regulations, 
            and updated to be made consistent with hazard analysis and 
            critical control point principles. FSIS will propose 
            regulations to establish new systems for poultry slaughter 
            inspection, catfish inspection, as well as a new voluntary 
            Federal-State cooperative inspection program. To assist 
            small entities to comply with food safety requirements, the 
            Food Safety and Inspection Service will continue to 
            collaborate with other USDA agencies and State partners in 
            the enhanced small business outreach program.
 Farm Loans and Disaster Assistance. USDA will work to ensure a 
            strong U.S. agricultural system through farm income support 
            and farm loan programs. In addition, USDA will implement a 
            new disaster assistance program authorized by the 2008 Farm 
            Bill, the Emergency Forest Restoration Program. Regulations 
            are also being developed for conservation loan programs 
            intended to help producers finance the construction of 
            conservation measures.
 Forestry and Conservation. USDA has completed all rulemaking 
            for the new and reauthorized 2008 Farm Bill conservation 
            programs and will focus on their continued implementation 
            in 2011. In the forestry area, the Department will focus on 
            developing a new planning rule that improves the National 
            forests' planning process, decisionmaking, and the legal 
            defensibility of land management plans. In 2011, the 
            Department plans to complete the transition from the

[[Page 79468]]

            2000 planning rule that is now in effect to the new 
            planning rule that will update planning procedures to 
            reflect contemporary collaborative planning practices.
 Marketing and Regulatory Programs. USDA will work to support 
            the organic sector and continue regulatory work to protect 
            the health and value of U.S. agricultural and natural 
            resources. USDA will also implement regulations to enhance 
            enforcement of the Packers and Stockyards Act. In addition, 
            USDA is working with stakeholders to develop acceptable 
            animal disease traceability standards. Regarding plant 
            health, USDA anticipates revising the permitting of plant 
            pests and biological control organisms. USDA will also 
            amend regulations for importing nursery stock to better 
            address plant health risks associated with propagative 
            material. For the Animal Welfare Act, USDA will propose 
            specific standards for the humane care of birds and dogs 
            imported for resale. USDA will also implement regulations 
            to implement dairy promotion and research provisions of the 
            2008 Farm Bill.
Reducing Paperwork Burden on Customers
USDA continues to make substantial progress in implementing the goal of 
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 to reduce the burden of information 
collection on the public. To meet the requirements of the E-Government 
Act, agencies across USDA are providing electronic alternatives to 
their traditionally paper-based customer transactions. As a result, 
producers increasingly have the option to electronically file forms and 
all other documentation online. To facilitate the expansion of 
electronic government, USDA implemented an electronic authentication 
capability that allows customers to ``sign-on'' once and conduct 
business with all USDA agencies. Supporting these efforts are ongoing 
analyses to identify and eliminate redundant data collections and 
streamline collection instructions. The end result of implementing 
these initiatives is better service to our customers, enabling them to 
choose when and where to conduct business with USDA.
Major Regulatory Priorities
This document represents summary information on prospective significant 
regulations as called for in Executive Order 12866. The following USDA 
agencies are represented in this regulatory plan, along with a summary 
of their mission and key regulatory priorities in 2011:
Food and Nutrition Service
Mission: FNS increases food security and reduces hunger in partnership 
with cooperating organizations by providing children and low-income 
people access to food, a healthful diet, and nutrition education in a 
manner that supports American agriculture and inspires public 
confidence.
Priorities: In addition to responding to provisions of legislation 
authorizing and modifying Federal nutrition assistance programs, FNS' 
2011 regulatory plan supports USDA's goal to ensure that all of 
America's children have access to safe, nutritious, and balanced meals:
 Increase Access to Nutritious Food. This objective represents 
            FNS' efforts to improve nutrition by providing access to 
            program benefits (food consumed at home, school meals, 
            commodities) and distributing State administrative funds to 
            support program operations. To advance this objective, FNS 
            plans to publish a proposed rule to codify provisions of 
            the 2008 Farm Bill that expand access to Supplemental 
            Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits and address 
            other eligibility, certification, employment, and training 
            issues. An interim rule implementing provisions of the 
            Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 to 
            establish automatic eligibility for homeless children for 
            school meals further supports this objective.
 Promote Healthy Diet and Physical Activity Behaviors.This 
            objective represents FNS' efforts to improve the diets of 
            its clients through nutrition education, support the 
            national effort to reduce obesity by promoting healthy 
            eating and physical activity, and to ensure that program 
            benefits meet appropriate standards to effectively improve 
            nutrition for program participants. In support of this 
            objective, FNS plans to propose a rule updating the 
            nutrition standards in the school meals programs, finalize 
            a rule updating the WIC food packages, and establish 
            permanent rules for the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program, 
            which currently operates in a select number of schools in 
            each State, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, 
            and the Virgin Islands.
Food Safety and Inspection Service
Mission: The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is responsible 
for ensuring that meat, poultry, egg, and catfish products in 
interstate and foreign commerce are wholesome, not adulterated, and 
properly marked, labeled, and packaged.
Priorities: FSIS is committed to developing and issuing science-based 
regulations intended to ensure that meat, poultry, egg, and catfish 
products are wholesome and not adulterated or misbranded. FSIS 
regulatory actions support the objective to protect public health by 
ensuring that food is safe under USDA's goal to ensure access to safe 
food. To reduce the number of foodborne illnesses and increase program 
efficiencies, FSIS will continue to review its existing authorities and 
regulations to ensure that it can address emerging food safety 
challenges, to streamline excessively prescriptive regulations, and to 
revise or remove regulations that are inconsistent with the FSIS' 
hazard analysis and critical control point (HACCP) regulations. FSIS is 
also working with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to improve 
coordination and increase the effectiveness of inspection activities. 
FSIS' priority initiatives are as follows:
 Rulemakings that support initiatives of the President's Food 
            Safety Working Group:

- Poultry Slaughter Inspection. FSIS plans to amend poultry products 
inspection regulations to put in place a system in which the establishment 
sorts the carcasses for defects and FSIS verifies that the system is under 
control and producing safe and wholesome product. FSIS will propose to 
adopt performance standards designed to ensure that the establishments are 
carrying out slaughter, dressing, and chilling operations in a manner that 
ensures no significant growth of pathogens.

- Revision of Egg Products Inspection Regulations. FSIS is planning to 
propose requirements for federally inspected egg product plants to develop 
and implement HACCP systems and sanitation standard operating procedures. 
FSIS will be proposing pathogen reduction performance standards for egg 
products and will remove prescriptive requirements for egg product plants.

 Initiatives that provide for disclosure or that enable 
            economic growth. FSIS plans to issue two final rules to 
            promote disclosure of information to the public or that 
            provide flexibility for the adoption of new technologies 
            and that promote economic growth:

- Nutrition Labeling of Single-Ingredient Products and Ground or

[[Page 79469]]

Chopped Meat and Poultry Products. Regulations have been proposed to 
require nutrition information on the major cuts of single-ingredient, raw 
meat and poultry products to appear on the product label or at the point of 
purchase, unless an exemption applies. These regulations would also require 
nutrition labeling on all ground or chopped meat or poultry products unless 
an exemption applies.

- Permission to Use Air Inflation of Meat Carcasses and Parts. FSIS has 
proposed to revise the Federal meat inspection regulations to permit 
establishments that slaughter livestock or prepare livestock carcasses and 
parts to inflate carcasses and parts with air if they develop, implement, 
and maintain written controls to ensure that the procedure does not cause 
insanitary conditions or adulterate product. In addition, FSIS has proposed 
to amend its regulations to remove the approved methods for inflating 
livestock carcasses and parts by air and the requirement that 
establishments seek approval from FSIS for inflation procedures not listed 
in the regulations.

 Interstate Shipment of State-Inspected Meat and Poultry 
            Products. As authorized by the 2008 Farm Bill, FSIS will 
            issue final regulations to implement a new voluntary 
            Federal-State cooperative inspection program under which 
            State-inspected establishments with 25 or fewer employees 
            would be eligible to ship meat and poultry products in 
            interstate commerce.
 Notification, Documentation, and Recordkeeping Requirements 
            for Inspected Establishments. As authorized by the 2008 
            Farm Bill, FSIS will issue final regulations that will 
            require establishments that are subject to inspection to 
            promptly notify FSIS when an adulterated or misbranded 
            product received by or originating from the establishment 
            has entered into commerce. The regulations also will 
            require the establishments to prepare and maintain current 
            procedures for the recall of all products produced and 
            shipped by the establishments and to document each 
            reassessment of the establishments' process control plans.
 Catfish Inspection. FSIS is developing regulations to 
            implement provisions of the 2008 Farm Bill provisions that 
            make catfish an amenable species under the Federal Meat 
            Inspection Act (FMIA).
 Public Health Information System. To support its food safety 
            inspection activities, FSIS is developing the Public Health 
            Information System (PHIS). PHIS, which is user-friendly and 
            Web-based, will replace many of FSIS' current systems and 
            automate many business processes. To facilitate the 
            implementation of some PHIS components, FSIS is proposing 
            to provide for electronic export and import application and 
            certification processes as alternatives to the current 
            paper-based systems for these certifications.
 Other planned initiatives. FSIS plans to finalize a February 
            2001 proposed rule to establish food safety performance 
            standards for all processed ready-to-eat (RTE) meat and 
            poultry products and for partially heat-treated meat and 
            poultry products that are not ready-to-eat. Some provisions 
            of the proposal addressed post-lethality contamination of 
            RTE products with Listeria monocytogenes. In June 2003, 
            FSIS published an interim final rule requiring 
            establishments to prevent L. monocytogenes contamination of 
            RTE products. FSIS has carefully reviewed its economic 
            analysis of the interim final rule and is planning to 
            affirm the interim rule as a final rule with changes.
 FSIS small business implications. The great majority of 
            businesses regulated by FSIS are small businesses. Some of 
            the regulations listed above substantially affect small 
            businesses. Some rulemakings can benefit small businesses. 
            For example, the rule on interstate shipment of State-
            inspected products will open interstate markets to some 
            small State-inspected establishments that previously could 
            only sell their products within State boundaries.
FSIS conducts a small business outreach program that provides critical 
training, access to food safety experts, and information resources 
(such as compliance guidance and questions and answers on various 
topics) in forms that are uniform, easily comprehended, and consistent. 
FSIS collaborates in this effort with other USDA agencies and 
cooperating State partners. For example, FSIS makes plant owners and 
operators aware of loan programs, available through USDA's Rural 
Business and Cooperative programs, to help them in upgrading their 
facilities. FSIS employees meet with small and very small plant 
operators to learn more about their specific needs and provide joint 
training sessions for small and very small plants and FSIS employees.
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
Mission: A major part of the mission of the Animal and Plant Health 
Inspection Service (APHIS) is to protect the health and value of 
American agricultural and natural resources. APHIS regulatory actions 
support USDA's goal of ensuring access to safe, plentiful, and 
nutritious food by minimizing major diseases and pests that have the 
potential for reducing agricultural productivity. In support of this 
goal, APHIS conducts programs to prevent the introduction of exotic 
pests and diseases into the United States and conducts surveillance, 
monitoring, control, and eradication programs for pests and diseases in 
this country. These activities enhance agricultural productivity and 
competitiveness and contribute to the national economy and the public 
health. APHIS also conducts programs to ensure the humane handling, 
care, treatment, and transportation of animals under the Animal Welfare 
Act.
Priorities: With respect to animal health, APHIS is working with State 
and tribal representatives to identify a regulatory approach that will 
provide national traceability standards for livestock moved interstate 
while allowing each State and tribe the flexibility to work with their 
producers to develop standards that will work best for them. In the 
area of animal welfare, APHIS plans to propose standards for the humane 
handling, care, treatment, and transportation of birds covered under 
the Animal Welfare Act and to establish regulations to ensure the 
humane treatment of dogs imported into the United States for resale. 
Regarding plant health, APHIS anticipates publishing a proposed rule 
that would revise the current regulations governing the permitting of 
plant pests and biological control organisms. APHIS is also preparing a 
final rule that will conclude the first phase of its comprehensive 
revision to its regulations for importing nursery stock (plants for 
planting) to better address plant health risks associated with 
propagative material.
Agricultural Marketing Service
Mission: The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) provides marketing 
services to producers, manufacturers, distributors, importers, 
exporters, and consumers of food products. The AMS

[[Page 79470]]

also manages the government's food purchases, supervises food quality 
grading, maintains food quality standards, and supervises the Federal 
research and promotion programs. AMS programs contribute to the 
achievement of a number of objectives under the Department's goal to 
assist rural communities to create prosperity and the goal to ensure 
that all of America's children have access to safe, nutritious, and 
balanced meals.
Priorities:
 National Organic Program (NOP). AMS' priority items for the 
            next year include several rulemakings that impact the 
            organic industry. Statistics indicating rapid growth in the 
            organic sector have highlighted issues that need to be 
            addressed, including:

- Origin of Livestock. On October 24, 2008, NOP published a proposed rule 
with request for comments on the access to pasture requirements for 
ruminants. This proposed rule included a change in the origin of livestock 
requirements for dairy animals under section 205.236 of the NOP 
regulations. Many of the comments received on the October 2008 proposed 
rule suggested that the origin of livestock issue should be pursued through 
a separate rulemaking from access to pasture. As a result, the proposed 
change to the origin of livestock requirements was not retained in the 
final rule on access to pasture published on February 17, 2010. AMS plans 
to develop a proposed rule specific to origin of livestock under the NOP 
during fiscal year (FY) 2011.

- Periodic Pesticide Residue Testing. The Organic Foods Production Act 
(OFPA) of 1990 included language requiring certifying agents to conduct 
periodic residue testing of organic products produced or handled in 
accordance with the NOP. This requirement was meant to identify organic 
products that contained pesticides or other nonorganic residues in 
violation with the NOP or other applicable laws. In March 2010, an Office 
of Inspector General (OIG) audit of the NOP suggested that a legal review 
by the Office of General Counsel (OGC) of the current NOP regulations was 
needed to assess whether the existing regulations are in compliance with 
the residue testing requirement under OFPA. As a result of the legal 
opinion received by the NOP on this issue, AMS will publish a proposed rule 
on new periodic pesticide residue testing requirements in 2011.

- Streamlining Enforcement Related Actions. The March 2010 Office of 
Inspector General (OIG) audit of the NOP raised issues related to the 
program's process for imposing enforcement actions. One concern was that 
organic producers and handlers facing revocation or suspension of their 
certification are able to market their products as organic during what can 
be a lengthy appeals process. As a result, AMS will publish a proposed rule 
in 2011 to streamline the NOP appeals process such that appeals are 
reviewed and responded to in a timely manner.

 Dairy Promotion and Research Program (Dairy Import 
            Assessments). AMS has entered the final stage of 
            establishing the National Dairy Promotion and Research 
            Program. The Dairy Production Stabilization Act of 1983 
            (Dairy Act) authorized USDA to create a national producer 
            program for dairy product promotion, research, and 
            nutrition education as part of a comprehensive strategy to 
            increase human consumption of milk and dairy products. 
            Dairy farmers fund this self-help program through a 
            mandatory assessment on all milk produced in the contiguous 
            48 States and marketed commercially. Dairy farmers 
            administer the national program through the National Dairy 
            Promotion and Research Board (Dairy Board).
The 2008 Farm Bill extended the program to include producers in Alaska, 
Hawaii, and Puerto Rico, who will pay an assessment of $0.15 per 
hundredweight of milk production. Imported dairy products will be 
assessed at $0.075 per hundredweight of fluid milk equivalent. AMS 
published proposed regulations establishing the program in the May 19, 
2009, Federal Register. The proposal had a 30-day comment period. The 
final rule is expected to be published by the end of 2010.
Grain, Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration
Mission: The Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration 
(GIPSA) facilitates the marketing of livestock, poultry, meat, cereals, 
oilseeds, and related agricultural products and promotes fair and 
competitive trading practices for the overall benefit of consumers and 
American agriculture.GIPSA's activities contribute significantly to the 
Department's goal to increase prosperity in rural areas by supporting a 
competitive agricultural system.
Priorities: GIPSA intends to issue a final rule that will define 
practices or conduct that are unfair, unjustly discriminatory, or 
deceptive, and/or that represent the making or giving of an undue or 
unreasonable preference or advantage, and ensure that producers and 
growers can fully participate in any arbitration process that may arise 
relating to livestock or poultry contracts. This regulation is being 
finalized in accordance with the authority granted to the Secretary by 
the Packers and Stockyards Act of 1921 and with the requirements of 
sections 11005 and 11006 of the 2008 Farm Bill.
Farm Service Agency
Mission: The Farm Service Agency's (FSA) mission is to equitably serve 
all farmers, ranchers, and agricultural partners through the delivery 
of effective, efficient agricultural programs, which contributes to two 
USDA goals. The goal of assisting rural communities in creating 
prosperity so they are self-sustaining, re-populating, and economically 
thriving; and the goal to enhance the Nation's natural resource base by 
assisting owners and operators of farms and ranches to conserve and 
enhance soil, water, and related natural resources. It supports the 
first goal by stabilizing farm income, providing credit to new or 
existing farmers and ranchers who are temporarily unable to obtain 
credit from commercial sources, and helping farm operations recover 
from the effects of disaster. FSA supports the second goal by 
administering several conservation programs directed toward 
agricultural producers. The largest program is the Conservation Reserve 
Program (CRP), which protects nearly 32 million acres of 
environmentally sensitive land.
Priorities:
 Disaster Assistance. Regulations will be issued to establish a 
            new disaster assistance program, the Emergency Forest 
            Restoration Program. This program requires new regulations 
            and minor revisions to the existing related Emergency 
            Conservation Program regulations.
 Biomass Crop Assistance Program. Final regulations were 
            published to complete implementation of the Biomass Crop 
            Assistance Program. This program supports the 
            Administration's energy initiative to accelerate the 
            investment in and production of biofuels. The program will 
            provide financial assistance to

[[Page 79471]]

            agricultural and forest land owners and operators to 
            establish and produce eligible crops, including woody 
            biomass, for conversion to bioenergy, and the collection, 
            harvest, storage, and transportation of eligible material 
            for use in a biomass conversion facility.
 Farm Loan Programs. FSA will develop and issue regulations to 
            amend programs for farm operating loans, down payment 
            loans, and emergency loans to include socially 
            disadvantaged farmers, increase loan limits, loan size, 
            funding targets, interest rates, and graduating borrowers 
            to commercial credit. In addition, the regulations will 
            establish a new direct and guaranteed loan program to 
            assist farmers in implementing conservation practices.
Forest Service
Mission: The mission of the Forest Service is to sustain the health, 
productivity, and diversity of the Nation's forests and rangelands to 
meet the needs of present and future generations. This includes 
protecting and managing National Forest System lands, providing 
technical and financial assistance to States, communities, and private 
forest landowners, and developing and providing scientific and 
technical assistance and scientific exchanges in support of 
international forest and range conservation. Forest Service regulatory 
priorities support the accomplishment of the Department's goal to 
ensure our National forests are conserved, restored, and made more 
resilient to climate change, while enhancing our water resources.
Priorities:
 Land Management Planning Rule. The Forest Service is required 
            to issue rulemaking for National Forest System land 
            management planning under 16 U.S.C. 1604. The first 
            planning rule was adopted in 1979 and amended in 1982. The 
            Forest Service published a new planning rule on April 21, 
            2008 (73 FR 21468). On June 30, 2009, the United States 
            District Court for the Northern District of California 
            invalidated the Forest Service's 2008 Planning Rule 
            published at 36 CFR 219 based on violations of NEPA and ESA 
            in the rulemaking process. The District Court vacated the 
            2008 rule, enjoined the USDA from further implementing it, 
            and remanded it to the USDA for further proceedings. USDA 
            has determined that the 2000 planning rule is now in 
            effect, including its transition provisions as amended in 
            2002 and 2003, and as clarified by interpretative rules 
            issued in 2001 and 2004, which allows the use of the 
            provisions of the 1982 planning rule to amend or revise 
            plans. The Forest Service is now in the 2000 planning rule 
            transition period. The Forest Service is proposing a new 
            planning rule. In so doing, the Forest Service plans to 
            correct deficiencies that have been identified over two 
            decades of forest planning and update planning procedures 
            to reflect contemporary collaborative planning practices.
 Community Forest and Open Space Conservation Program. The 
            purpose of the Community Forest Program is to achieve 
            community benefits through financial assistance grants to 
            local governments, tribal governments, and nonprofit 
            organizations to establish community forests by acquiring 
            and protecting private forestlands. Community forest 
            benefits are specified in the authorizing statute and 
            include economic benefits from sustainable forest 
            management, natural resource conservation, forest-based 
            educational programs, model forest stewardship activities, 
            and recreational opportunities.
 Closure of NFS Lands to Protect Privacy of Tribal Activities. 
            There is currently no provision for a special closure of 
            NFS lands to protect the privacy of tribal activities for 
            traditional and cultural purposes. The Forest Service will 
            amend its regulations to allow special closure of NFS land 
            to protect the privacy of tribal activities for traditional 
            and cultural purposes.
Rural Business-Cooperative Service
Mission: Promoting a dynamic business environment in rural America is 
the goal of the Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBS). Business 
Programs works in partnership with the private sector and the 
community-based organizations to provide financial assistance and 
business planning, and helps fund projects that create or preserve 
quality jobs and/or promote a clean rural environment. The financial 
resources are often leveraged with those of other public and private 
credit source lenders to meet business and credit needs in under-served 
areas. Recipients of these programs may include individuals, 
corporations, partnerships, cooperatives, public bodies, nonprofit 
corporations, Indian tribes, and private companies. The mission of 
Cooperative Programs of RBS is to promote understanding and use of the 
cooperative form of business as a viable organizational option for 
marketing and distributing agricultural products.
Priorities: In support of the Department's goal to increase the 
prosperity of rural communities, RBS regulatory priorities will 
facilitate sustainable renewable energy development and enhance the 
opportunities necessary for rural families to thrive economically. 
RBS's priority will be to publish regulations to fully implement the 
2008 Farm Bill. This includes promulgating regulations for the 
Biorefinery Assistance Program (sec. 9003), the Repowering Assistance 
Program (sec. 9004), the Bioenergy Program for Advanced Biofuels (sec. 
9005), and the Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP). RBS 
has been administering sections 9003, 9004, and 9005 through the use of 
Notices of Funds Availability and Notices of Contract Proposals. 
Revisions to the Rural Energy for America Program (sec. 9007) will be 
made to incorporate Energy Audits and Renewable Energy Development 
Assistance and Feasibility Studies for Rural Energy Systems as eligible 
grant purposes, as well as other Farm Bill initiatives and various 
technical changes throughout the rule. In addition, revisions to the 
Business and Industry Guaranteed Loan Program will be made to implement 
2008 Farm Bill provisions and other program initiatives. These rules 
will minimize program complexity and burden on the public while 
enhancing program delivery and RBS oversight.
Rural Utilities Service
Mission: The mission of the Rural Utilities Service is to improve the 
quality of life in rural America by providing investment capital for 
the deployment of critical rural utilities telecommunications, 
electric, and water and waste disposal infrastructure. Financial 
assistance is provided to rural utilities, municipalities, commercial 
corporations, limited liability companies, public utility districts, 
Indian tribes, and cooperative, nonprofit, limited-dividend, or mutual 
associations. The public-private partnership, which is forged between 
the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) and these industries, results in 
billions of dollars in rural infrastructure development and creates 
thousands of jobs for the American economy.
Priorities: RUS' regulatory priorities will be to achieve the 
President's goal to bring affordable broadband to all rural Americans. 
To accomplish this, RUS will continue to improve the Broadband Program 
established by the 2002 Farm

[[Page 79472]]

Bill. The 2002 Farm Bill authorized RUS to approve loans and loan 
guarantees for the costs of construction, improvement, and acquisition 
of facilities and equipment for broadband service in eligible rural 
communities. The 2008 Farm Bill is significantly changing the statutory 
requirements of the Broadband Loan Program. As such, RUS will be 
issuing an interim rule to implement the statutory changes and will 
request comments on the section of the rule that was not part of the 
proposed rule that was published in May 2007. In addition, the 
regulations will be issued to implement provisions of the American 
Recovery and Reinvestment Act that expanded RUS's authority to make 
loans and provided new authority to make grants to facilitate broadband 
deployment in rural areas.
Departmental Management
Mission: Departmental Management's mission is to provide management 
leadership to ensure that USDA administrative programs, policies, 
advice, and counsel meet the needs of USDA program organizations, 
consistent with laws and mandates, and provide safe and efficient 
facilities and services to customers.
Priorities: In support of the Department's goal to increase rural 
prosperity, USDA's Departmental Management will finalize regulations 
establishing a program allowing manufacturers and vendors of eligible 
products made from biobased feedstocks to display the label on their 
packaging and marketing materials. Once completed, this regulation will 
implement a section of the 2008 Farm Bill and will promote alternative 
uses of agriculture and forest materials.
Aggregate Costs and Benefits
USDA will ensure that its regulations provide benefits that exceed 
costs, but is unable to provide an estimate of the aggregated impacts 
of its regulations. Problems with aggregation arise due to differing 
baselines, data gaps, and inconsistencies in methodology and the type 
of regulatory costs and benefits considered. In addition, aggregation 
omits benefits and costs that cannot be reliably quantified, such as 
improved health resulting from increased access to more nutritious 
foods, higher levels of food safety, and increased quality of life 
derived from investments in rural infrastructure. Some benefits and 
costs associated with rules listed in the regulatory plan cannot 
currently be quantified as the rules are still being formulated. For 
2011, the Department's focus will be to implement the changes to 
programs in such a way as to provide benefits while minimizing program 
complexity and regulatory burden for program participants.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

1.  WHOLESALE PORK REPORTING PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 1635 to 1636


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 59


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, March 28, 2012.


With the passage of S. 3656, the Mandatory Price Reporting Act of 2010, 
the Secretary of Agriculture is required to amend chapter 3 of subtitle 
B of the Agricultural Marketing Act of 1946 by adding a new section for 
mandatory reporting of wholesale pork cuts. To make these amendments, 
the Secretary was directed to promulgate a final rule no later than one 
and a half years after the date of the enactment of the Act. 
Accordingly, a final rule will be promulgated by March 28, 2012.


Abstract:


On September 15, 2010, Congress passed the Mandatory Price Reporting 
Act of 2010 reauthorizing Livestock Mandatory Reporting for 5 years and 
adding a provision for mandatory reporting of wholesale pork cuts. The 
Act was signed by the President on September 28, 2010. Congress 
directed the Secretary to engage in negotiated rulemaking to make 
required regulatory changes for mandatory wholesale pork reporting. 
Further, Congress required that the negotiated rulemaking committee 
include representatives from (i) organizations representing swine 
producers; (ii) organizations representing packers of pork, processors 
of pork, retailers of pork, and buyers of wholesale pork; (iii) the 
Department of Agriculture; and (iv) among interested parties that 
participate in swine or pork production.


Statement of Need:


Implementation of mandatory pork reporting is required by Congress. 
Congress delegated responsibility to the Secretary for determining what 
information is necessary and appropriate. The Food, Conservation, and 
Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-234) directed the Secretary to conduct 
a study to determine advantages, drawbacks, and potential 
implementation issues associated with adopting mandatory wholesale pork 
reporting. The report from this study generally concluded that 
voluntary wholesale pork price reporting is thin and becoming thinner, 
and some degree of support for moving to mandatory price reporting 
exists at every segment of the industry interviewed. The report was 
delivered to Congress on March 25, 2010.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Livestock Mandatory Reporting is authorized under the Agricultural 
Marketing Act (7 U.S.C. 1635 to 1636). The Livestock and Seed Program 
of USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service has day-to-day responsibility 
for collecting and disseminating LMR data.


Alternatives:


There are no alternatives, as this rulemaking is a matter of law based 
on the Mandatory Price Reporting Act of 2010.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Estimation of costs will follow the previous methodology used in 
earlier Livestock Mandatory Reporting rulemaking. The focus of the cost 
estimation is the burden placed on reporting companies in providing 
pork marketing data to the Livestock and Seed Program. Previous 
rulemaking cost estimates of boxed beef reporting of similar data found 
the burden to be an annual total of 65 hours in additional reporting 
requirements per firm. Because no official USDA grade standards are 
used in the marketing of pork, and fewer cutting styles, the burden for 
pork reporting firms in comparison with beef reporting firms could be 
lower. However, the impact is not truly known at this stage.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice                          12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None

[[Page 79473]]

Agency Contact:
Warren Preston
Department of Agriculture
Agricultural Marketing Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-6231
Fax: 202 690-3732
Email: warren.preston@usda.gov
RIN: 0581-AD07
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--AMS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

2. NATIONAL DAIRY PROMOTION AND RESEARCH PROGRAM; DAIRY IMPORT 
ASSESSMENTS, DA-08-0050

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 4501 to 4514; 7 USC 7401


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 1150


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, September 19, 2008, Assessments on imported dairy 
products must be implemented by deadline.


With the passage of section 1507 in the 2008 Farm Bill, the Dairy Act 
was amended to apply certain assessments to Alaska, Hawaii, the 
District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico. The 2008 
Farm Bill authorized the Secretary to issue regulations to implement 
the mandatory dairy import assessment without providing a notice and 
comment period. However, due to the interest of affected parties, a 
notice and comment period was provided.


Abstract:


The Dairy Act authorizes the Order for dairy product promotion, 
research, and nutrition education as part of a comprehensive strategy 
to increase human consumption of milk and dairy products and to reduce 
milk surpluses. The program functions to strengthen the dairy 
industry's position in the marketplace by maintaining and expanding 
domestic and foreign consumption of fluid milk and dairy products. 
Amendments to the Order are pursuant to the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills. 
The 2002 Farm Bill mandates that the Order be amended to implement an 
assessment on imported dairy products to fund promotion and research. 
The 2008 Farm Bill specifies a mandatory assessment rate of 7.5-cent 
per hundredweight of milk, or equivalent thereof, on dairy products 
imported into the United States. Additionally, in accordance with the 
2008 Farm Bill, the term ``United States'' is the Dairy Act is amended 
to mean all States, the District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of 
Puerto Rico. Producers in these areas will be assessed 15 cents per 
hundredweight for all milk produced and marketed.


Statement of Need:


In response to the May 19, 2009 (74 FR 23359), proposed rule (National 
Dairy Promotion and Research Program; Proposed Rule on Amendments to 
the Order), AMS received 189 timely comments from consumers, dairy 
producers, foreign governments, importers, exporters, manufacturers, 
members of Congress, trade associations, and other interested parties.


The comments covered a wide range of topics, including 39 in opposition 
to the proposal and 150 in support of the proposal. Opponents of the 
proposal expressed concern over the lack of a referendum requirement 
among those affected; default assessment rates; lack of ability to no 
longer promote State-branded dairy products; lack of importer 
organizations eligible to become a Qualified Program; disputed the 
cost-benefit analysis for importers and producers; and cited 
unreasonable importer paperwork and record keeping burdens.


Proponents of the proposal expressed support for an expedited 
implementation of the dairy import assessment; cited the enhanced 
benefits both domestic producers and importers will receive as a result 
of implementation; recommended new Harmonized Tariff Schedule codes; 
use of a default assessment rate; recommended regular reporting of the 
products and assessments on imports; and all thresholds for compliance 
with U.S. trade obligations have been met.


AMS plans to issue a final rule implementing the dairy import 
assessment in the near future. In response to the comments received and 
after consultation with USTR, AMS is addressing, in the final rule, 
referenda, alternative assessment rates, and compliance and enforcement 
activity. All remaining changes are miscellaneous and minor in nature 
in order to clarify regulatory text.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The National Dairy Promotion and Research Program (National Program) is 
authorized under the authorized under the provisions of the Dairy 
Production Stabilization Act of 1983 (7 U.S.C. 4501 to 4514), and the 
Dairy Promotion and Research Order (7 CFR part 1150). The Dairy 
Programs unit of USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service has day--to--day 
oversight responsibilities for the National Program.


Alternatives:


There are no alternatives, as this rulemaking is a matter of law based 
on the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Assessments to dairy producers under the Order are relatively small 
compared to producer revenue. If dairy producers in Alaska, Hawaii, the 
District of Columbia, and the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico had paid 
assessments of $0.15 per hundredweight of milk marketed in 2007, it is 
estimated that $1.1 million would have been paid. This is about 0.6 
percent of the $192 million total value of milk produced and marketed 
in these areas.


Benefits to producers in these areas are assumed to be similar to those 
benefits received by producers of other U.S. geographical regions. 
Cornell University has conducted an independent economic analysis of 
the Program that is included in the annual report to Congress. Cornell 
determined that from 1998 through 2007, each dollar invested in generic 
dairy marketing by dairy farmers during the period would return between 
$5.52 and $5.94, on average, in net revenue to farmers.


Assessments collected from importers under the National Program will be 
relatively small compared to the value of dairy imports. If importers 
had been assessed $0.075 per hundredweight, or equivalent thereof, for 
imported dairy products in 2007 as specified in this rule, it is 
estimated that less than $6.1 million would have been paid. This is 
about 0.3 percent of the $2.4 billion value of the dairy products 
imported in 2007.


Risks:


If the amendments are not implemented, USDA would be in violation of 
the 2002 and 2008 Farm Bills.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/19/09                    74 FR 23359

[[Page 79474]]

NPRM Comment Period End         06/18/09
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Whitney Rick
Promotion and Research Branch Chief
Department of Agriculture
Agricultural Marketing Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-6909
Fax: 202 720-0285
Email: whitney.rick@usda.gov
RIN: 0581-AC87
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

3. ANIMAL WELFARE; REGULATIONS AND STANDARDS FOR BIRDS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 2131 to 2159


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 1 to 3


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


APHIS intends to establish standards for the humane handling, care, 
treatment, and transportation of birds other than birds bred for use in 
research.


Statement of Need:


The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 amended the 
definition of animal in the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) by specifically 
excluding birds, rats of the genus Rattus, and mice of the genus Mus, 
bred for use in research. While the definition of animal in the 
regulations contained in 9 CFR part 1 has excluded rats of the genus 
Rattus and mice of the genus Mus bred for use in research, that 
definition has also excluded all birds (i.e., not just those birds bred 
for use in research). In line with this change to the definition of 
animal in the AWA, APHIS intends to establish standards in 9 CFR part 3 
for the humane handling, care, treatment, and transportation of birds 
other than those birds bred for use in research and to revise the 
regulations in 9 CFR parts 1 and 2 to make them applicable to birds.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Animal Welfare Act (AWA) authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to 
promulgate standards and other requirements governing the humane 
handling, care, treatment, and transportation of certain animals by 
dealers, research facilities, exhibitors, operators of auction sales, 
and carriers and immediate handlers. Animals covered by the AWA include 
birds that are not bred for use in research.


Alternatives:


To be identified.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


To be determined.


Risks:


Not applicable.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            08/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         11/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Additional Information:


Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the 
Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.


Agency Contact:
Johanna Briscoe
Veterinary Medical Officer and Avian Specialist, Animal Care
Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
4700 River Road, Unit 84
Riverdale, MD 20737-1234
Phone: 301 734-0658
RIN: 0579-AC02
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--APHIS

<###DOC>

4. PLANT PEST REGULATIONS; UPDATE OF GENERAL PROVISIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 450; 7 USC 2260; 7 USC 7701 to 7772; 7 USC 7781 to 7786; 7 USC 
8301 to 8817; 19 USC 136; 21 USC 111; 21 USC 114a; 21 USC 136 and 136a; 
31 USC 9701; 42 USC 4331 to 4332


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 318 to 319; 7 CFR 330; 7 CFR 352


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


We are proposing to revise our regulations regarding the movement of 
plant pests. We are proposing to regulate the movement of not only 
plant pests, but also biological control organisms and associated 
articles. We are proposing risk-based criteria regarding the movement 
of biological control organisms, and are proposing to exempt certain 
types of plant pests from permitting requirements for their interstate 
movement and movement for environmental release. We are also proposing 
to revise our regulations regarding the movement of soil, and to 
establish regulations governing the biocontainment facilities in which 
plant pests, biological control organisms, and associated articles are 
held. This proposed rule replaces a previously published proposed rule, 
which we are withdrawing as part of this document. This proposal would 
clarify the factors that would be considered when assessing the risks 
associated with the movement of certain organisms, facilitate the 
movement of regulated organisms and articles in a manner that also 
protects U.S. agriculture, and address gaps in the current regulations.


Statement of Need:


APHIS is preparing a proposed rule to revise its regulations regarding 
the movement of plant pests. The revised regulations would address the 
importation and interstate movement of plant pests, biological control 
organisms, and associated articles and the release into the environment 
of biological control organisms. The revision would also address the 
movement of soil and establish regulations governing the biocontainment 
facilities in which

[[Page 79475]]

plant pests, biological control organisms, and associated articles are 
held. This proposal would clarify the factors that would be considered 
when assessing the risks associated with the movement of certain 
organisms, facilitate the movement of regulated organisms and articles 
in a manner that also protects U.S. agriculture, and address gaps in 
the current regulations.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Under section 411(a) of the Plant Protection Act (PPA), no person shall 
import, enter, export, or move in interstate commerce any plant pest, 
unless the importation, entry, exportation, or movement is authorized 
under a general or specific permit and in accordance with such 
regulations as the Secretary of Agriculture may issue to prevent the 
introduction of plant pests into the United States or the dissemination 
of plant pests within the United States.


Under section 412 of the PPA, the Secretary may restrict the 
importation or movement in interstate commerce of biological control 
organisms by requiring the organisms to be accompanied by a permit 
authorizing such movement and by subjecting the organisms to quarantine 
conditions or other remedial measures deemed necessary to prevent the 
spread of plant pests or noxious weeds. That same section of the PPA 
also gives the Secretary explicit authority to regulate the movement of 
associated articles.


Alternatives:


The alternatives we considered were taking no action at this time or 
implementing a comprehensive risk reduction plan. This latter 
alternative would be characterized as a broad risk mitigation strategy 
that could involve various options such as increased inspection, 
regulations specific to a certain organism or group of related 
organisms, or extensive biocontainment requirements.


We decided against the first alternative because leaving the 
regulations unchanged would not address the needs identified 
immediately above. We decided against the latter alternative, because 
available scientific information, personnel, and resources suggest that 
it would be impracticable at this time.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Undetermined at this time.


Risks:


Unless we issue such a proposal, the regulations will not provide a 
clear protocol for obtaining permits that authorize the movement and 
environmental release of biological control organisms. This, in turn, 
could impede research to explore biological control options for various 
plant pests and noxious weeds known to exist within the United States, 
and could indirectly lead to the further dissemination of such pests 
and weeds.


Moreover, unless we revise the soil regulations, certain provisions in 
the regulations will not adequately address the risk to plants, plant 
parts, and plant products within the United States that such soil might 
present.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice of Intent to 
    Prepare an 
    Environmental Impact 
    Statement                   10/20/09                    74 FR 53673
Notice Comment Period End       11/19/09
NPRM                            01/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State, Tribal


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the 
Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.


Agency Contact:
Shirley Wager-Page
Chief, Pest Permitting Branch, Plant Health Programs, PPQ
Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
4700 River Road, Unit 131
Riverdale, MD 20737-1236
Phone: 301 734-8453
RIN: 0579-AC98
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--APHIS

<###DOC>

5.  IMPORTATION OF LIVE DOGS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 2148


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 1 and 2


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would amend the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) regulations to 
regulate dogs imported for resale as required by a recent amendment to 
the AWA. Importation of dogs for resale would be prohibited unless the 
dogs are in good health, have all necessary vaccinations, and are 6 
months of age or older. This proposal will also reflect the exemptions 
provided in the amendment to the AWA for dogs imported for research 
purposes or veterinary treatment and for dogs legally imported into the 
State of Hawaii from the British Isles, Australia, Guam, or New 
Zealand.


Statement of Need:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 mandates that the 
Secretary of Agriculture promulgate regulations to implement and 
enforce new provisions of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) regarding the 
importation of dogs for resale. In line with the changes to the AWA, 
APHIS intends to amend the regulations in 9 CFR parts 1 and 2 to 
regulate the importation of dogs for resale.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246, signed 
into law on June 18, 2008) added a new section to the Animal Welfare 
Act (7 U.S.C. 2147) to restrict the importation of live dogs for 
resale. As amended, the AWA now prohibits the importation of dogs into 
the United States for resale unless the Secretary of Agriculture 
determines that the dogs are in good health, have received all 
necessary vaccinations, and are at least 6 months of age. Exceptions 
are provided for dogs imported for research purposes or veterinary 
treatment. An exception to the 6-month age requirement is also provided 
for dogs that are lawfully imported into Hawaii for resale purposes 
from the British Isles, Australia, Guam, or New Zealand in compliance 
with the applicable regulations of Hawaii, provided the dogs are 
vaccinated, are in good health, and are not transported out of Hawaii 
for resale purposes at less than 6 months of age.

[[Page 79476]]

Alternatives:


To be identified.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


To be determined.


Risks:


Not applicable.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10
NPRM Comment Period End         02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the 
Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.


Agency Contact:
Gerald Rushin
Veterinary Medical Officer, Animal Care
Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
4700 River Road, Unit 84
Riverdale, MD 20737-1234
Phone: 301 734-0954
RIN: 0579-AD23
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--APHIS

<###DOC>

6.  ANIMAL DISEASE TRACEABILITY

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 8305


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 90


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would establish a new part in the Code of Federal 
Regulations containing general identification and documentation 
requirements for livestock moving interstate. The purpose of the new 
regulations is to improve our ability to trace livestock in the event 
that disease is found. The regulations will provide national 
traceability standards for livestock moved interstate and allow each 
State and tribe the flexibility to develop ways of meeting the 
standards that will work best for them.


Statement of Need:


Preventing and controlling animal disease is the cornerstone of 
protecting American animal agriculture. While ranchers and farmers work 
hard to protect their animals and their livelihoods, there is never a 
guarantee that their animals will be spared from disease. To support 
their efforts, USDA has enacted regulations to prevent, control, and 
eradicate disease, and to increase foreign and domestic confidence in 
the safety of animals and animal products. Traceability helps give that 
reassurance. Traceability does not prevent disease, but knowing where 
diseased and at-risk animals are, where they have been, and when, is 
indispensable in emergency response and in ongoing disease programs. 
The primary objectives of these proposed regulations are to improve our 
ability to trace livestock in the event that disease is found and to 
provide national standards to ensure the smooth flow of livestock in 
interstate commerce, while also allowing States and tribes the 
flexibility to develop systems for tracing animals within their State 
and tribal lands that work best for them.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Under the Animal Health Protection Act (7 U.S.C. 8301 et seq.), the 
Secretary of Agriculture may prohibit or restrict the interstate 
movement of any animal to prevent the introduction or dissemination of 
any pest or disease of livestock, and may carry out operations and 
measures to detect, control, or eradicate any pest or disease of 
livestock. The Secretary may promulgate such regulations as may be 
necessary to carry out the Act.


Alternatives:


As part of its ongoing efforts to safeguard animal health, APHIS 
initiated implementation of the National Animal Identification System 
(NAIS) in 2004. More recently, the Agency launched an effort to assess 
the level of acceptance of NAIS through meetings with the Secretary, 
listening sessions in 14 cities, and public comments. Although there 
was some support for NAIS, the vast majority of participants were 
highly critical of the program and of USDA's implementation efforts. 
The feedback revealed that NAIS has become a barrier to achieving 
meaningful animal disease traceability in the United States in 
partnership with America's producers.


The option we are proposing pertains strictly to interstate movement 
and gives States and tribes the flexibility to identify and implement 
the traceability approaches that work best for them.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


A workable and effective animal traceability system would enhance 
animal health programs, leading to more secure market access and other 
societal gains. Traceability can reduce the cost of disease outbreaks, 
minimizing losses to producers and industries by enabling current and 
previous locations of potentially exposed animals to be readily 
identified. Trade benefits can include increased competitiveness in 
global markets generally, and when outbreaks do occur, the mitigation 
of export market losses through regionalization. Markets benefit 
through more efficient and timely epidemiological investigation of 
animal health issues. Other societal benefits include improved animal 
welfare during natural disasters.


Costs of an animal traceability system would include those for tags and 
tagging and would vary, depending on the method of identification 
chosen (e.g., metal tags vs. microchip implants). Costs are expected to 
vary by both type of operation and whether traceability would be by 
individual animal or by lot or group. Per head costs of traceability 
programs for the principal farm animals are estimated to be highest for 
cattle operations, followed by sheep, swine, and poultry operations. 
Larger operations would likely reap economies of scale, that is, incur 
lower costs per head than smaller operations. However, there will be 
exemptions for small producers who raise animals to feed themselves, 
their families, and their immediate neighbors. In addition, only 
operations moving livestock interstate would be required to comply with 
the regulations.


Risks:


This rulemaking is being undertaken to address the animal health risks 
posed by gaps in the existing regulations concerning identification of 
livestock being moved interstate. The current lack of a comprehensive 
animal traceability program is impairing our ability to trace animals 
that may be affected with disease.

[[Page 79477]]

Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


State, Tribal


Additional Information:


Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the 
Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.


Agency Contact:
Neil Hammerschmidt
NAIS Coordinator, Surveillance and Identification Programs, NCAHP, VS
Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
4700 River Road, Unit 200
Riverdale, MD 20737-1231
Phone: 301 734-5571
RIN: 0579-AD24
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--APHIS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

7. IMPORTATION OF PLANTS FOR PLANTING; ESTABLISHING A NEW CATEGORY OF 
PLANTS FOR PLANTING NOT AUTHORIZED FOR IMPORTATION PENDING PEST RISK 
ANALYSIS (RULEMAKING RESULTING FROM A SECTION 610 REVIEW)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 450; 7 USC 7701 to 7772; 7 USC 7781 to 7786; 21 USC 136 and 136a


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 319


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking will amend the regulations to establish a new category 
of regulated articles in the regulations governing the importation of 
nursery stock, also known as plants for planting. This category will 
list taxa of plants for planting whose importation is not authorized 
pending pest risk analysis. If scientific evidence indicates that a 
taxon of plants for planting is a quarantine pest or a host of a 
quarantine pest, we will publish a notice that will announce our 
determination that the taxon is a quarantine pest or a host of a 
quarantine pest, cite the scientific evidence we considered in making 
this determination, and give the public an opportunity to comment on 
our determination. If we receive no comments that change our 
determination, the taxon will subsequently be added to the new 
category. We will allow any person to petition for a pest risk analysis 
to be conducted for a taxon that has been added to the new category. 
After the pest risk analysis is completed, we will remove the taxon 
from the category and allow its importation subject to general 
requirements, allow its importation subject to specific restrictions, 
or prohibit its importation. We will consider applications for permits 
to import small quantities of germplasm from taxa whose importation is 
not authorized pending pest risk analysis, for experimental or 
scientific purposes under controlled conditions. This new category will 
allow us to take prompt action on evidence that the importation of a 
taxon of plants for planting poses a risk while continuing to allow for 
public participation in the process.


Statement of Need:


APHIS typically relies on inspection at a Federal plant inspection 
station or port of entry to mitigate the risks of pest introduction 
associated with the importation of plants for planting. Importation of 
plants for planting is further restricted or prohibited only if there 
is specific evidence that such importation could introduce a quarantine 
pest into the United States. Most of the taxa of plants for planting 
currently being imported have not been thoroughly studied to determine 
whether their importation presents a risk of introducing a quarantine 
pest into the United States. The volume and the number of types of 
plants for planting have increased dramatically in recent years, and 
there are several problems associated with gathering data on what 
plants for planting are being imported and on the risks such 
importation presents. In addition, quarantine pests that enter the 
United States via the importation of plants for planting pose a 
particularly high risk of becoming established within the United 
States. The current regulations need to be amended to better address 
these risks.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Secretary of Agriculture may prohibit or restrict the importation 
or entry of any plant if the Secretary determines that the prohibition 
or restriction is necessary to prevent the introduction into the United 
States of a plant pest or noxious weed (7 U.S.C. 7712).


Alternatives:


APHIS has identified one alternative to the approach we are 
considering. We could prohibit the importation of all nursery stock 
pending risk evaluation, approval, and notice-and-comment rulemaking, 
similar to APHIS' approach to regulating imported fruits and 
vegetables. This approach would lead to a major interruption in 
international trade and would have significant economic effects on both 
U.S. importers and U.S. consumers of plants for planting.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Undetermined.


Risks:


In the absence of some action to revise the nursery stock regulations 
to allow us to better address pest risks, increased introductions of 
plant pests via imported nursery stock are likely, causing extensive 
damage to both agricultural and natural plant resources.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/23/09                    74 FR 36403
NPRM Comment Period End         10/21/09
Final Rule                      12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the 
Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.

[[Page 79478]]

Agency Contact:
Arnold T. Tschanz
Senior Plant Pathologist, Risk Management and Plants for Planting 
Policy, RPM, PPQ
Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
4700 River Road, Unit 133
Riverdale, MD 20737-1231
Phone: 301 734-0627
RIN: 0579-AC03
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Rural Housing Service (RHS)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

8. MULTI-FAMILY HOUSING (MFH) REINVENTION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


5 USC 301; 42 USC 1490a; 7 USC 1989; 42 USC 1475; 42 USC 1479; 42 USC 
1480; 42 USC 1481; 42 USC 1484; 42 USC 1485; 42 USC 1486


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 1806; 7 CFR 1822; 7 CFR 1902; 7 CFR 1925; 7 CFR 1930; 7 CFR 1940; 
7 CFR 1942; 7 CFR 1944; 7 CFR 1951; 7 CFR 1955; 7 CFR 1956; 7 CFR 1965; 
7 CFR 3560; 7 CFR 3565


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Rural Housing Service has consolidated and streamlined the 
regulations pertaining to section 515 Rural Rental Housing, section 514 
Farm Labor Housing Loans, section 516 Farm Labor Housing Grants, and 
section 521 Rental Assistance Payments. Fourteen published regulations 
have been reduced to one regulation and handbooks for program 
administration. This will simplify loan origination and portfolio 
management for applicants, borrowers, and housing operators, as well as 
Rural Development field staff. This also provides flexibility for 
program modifications to reflect current and foreseeable changes. The 
consolidated regulations save time and simplify costs. Finally, the 
regulation is more customer friendly and responsive to the needs of the 
public.


Statement of Need:


The new regulation for the program known as the Multi-Family Housing 
Loan and Grant Programs will be more user-friendly for lenders, 
borrowers, and Agency staff. These changes are essential to allow for 
improved service to the public and for an expanded program with 
increased impact on rural housing opportunities without a corresponding 
expansion in Agency staff. The regulations will be shorter, better 
organized, and more simple and clear. Many documentation requirements 
will be eliminated or consolidated into more convenient formats.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The existing statutory authority for the MFH programs was established 
in title V of the Housing Act of 1949, which gave authority to the RHS 
(then the Farmers Home Administration) to make housing loans to 
farmers. As a result of this Act, the Agency established single-family 
and multi-family housing programs. Over time, the sections of the 
Housing Act of 1949 addressing MFH have been amended a number of times. 
Amendments have involved issues such as the provision of interest 
credit, broadening definitions of eligible areas and populations to be 
served, participation of limited profit entities, the establishment of 
a rental assistance program, and the imposition of a number of 
restrictive use provisions and prepayment restrictions.


Alternatives:


To not publish the rule would substantially restrict RHS' ability to 
effectively administer the programs and cost the Agency significant 
credibility with the public and oversight organizations.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Based on analysis of the proposed rule, the following impacts may 
occur, some of which could be considered significant:


There would be cost savings due to reduced paperwork, estimated to be 
about $1.8 million annually for the public and about $10.1 million for 
the Government.


Risks:


Without the streamlining, there will be a decrease in the ability of 
the Agency to provide safe, decent, and sanitary housing to program 
beneficiaries.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/02/03                    68 FR 32872
NPRM Comment Period End         08/01/03
Interim Final Rule              11/26/04                    69 FR 69032
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          12/27/04
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   02/22/05                     70 FR 8503
Final Action                    10/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Laurence Anderson
MFH Preservation and Direct Loans
Department of Agriculture
Rural Housing Service
STOP 0781
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-1611
Email: laurence.anderson@wdc.usda.gov
Related RIN: Merged with 0575-AC24
RIN: 0575-AC13
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

9. ENFORCEMENT OF THE PACKERS AND STOCKYARDS ACT

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


7 USC 181


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 201


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, June 18, 2010.


Abstract:


GIPSA is proposing regulations under the Packers and Stockyards Act, 
1921, that clarify when certain conduct in the livestock and poultry 
industries represents the making or giving of an undue or unreasonable 
preference or advantage or subjects a person or locality to an undue or 
unreasonable prejudice or disadvantage. These proposed regulations also 
establish criteria GIPSA will consider in determining whether a live 
poultry

[[Page 79479]]

dealer has provided reasonable notice to poultry growers of any 
suspension of the delivery of birds under a poultry growing 
arrangement; when a requirement of additional capital investments over 
the life of a poultry growing arrangement or swine production contract 
constitutes a violation of the P&S Act; and whether a live poultry 
dealer or swine contractor has provided a reasonable period of time for 
a poultry grower or a swine production contract grower to remedy a 
breach of contract that could lead to termination of the poultry 
growing arrangement or swine production contract. The Farm Bill also 
instructed the Secretary to promulgate regulations to ensure that 
producers and growers are afforded the opportunity to fully participate 
in the arbitration process if they so choose.


Statement of Need:


In enacting title XI of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 
(Farm Bill) (Pub. L. 110-246), Congress recognized the nature of 
problems encountered in the livestock and poultry industries and 
amended the Packers and Stockyards Act (P&S Act). These amendments 
established new requirements for participants in the livestock and 
poultry industries and required the Secretary of Agriculture 
(Secretary) to establish criteria to consider when determining that 
certain other conduct is in violation of the P&S Act.


The Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration's (GIPSA) 
attempts to enforce the broad prohibitions of the P&S Act have been 
frustrated, in part because it has not previously defined what conduct 
constitutes an unfair practice or the giving of an undue preference or 
advantage. The new regulations that GIPSA is proposing describe and 
clarify conduct that violates the P&S Act and allow for more effective 
and efficient enforcement by GIPSA. They will clarify conditions for 
industry compliance with the P&S Act and provide for a fairer market 
place.


In accordance with the Farm Bill, GIPSA is proposing regulations under 
the P&S Act that would clarify when certain conduct in the livestock 
and poultry industries represents the making or giving of an undue or 
unreasonable preference or advantage or subjects a person or locality 
to an undue or unreasonable prejudice or disadvantage. These proposed 
regulations also establish criteria that GIPSA will consider in 
determining whether a live poultry dealer has provided reasonable 
notice to poultry growers of a suspension of the delivery of birds 
under a poultry growing arrangement; when a requirement of additional 
capital investments over the life of a poultry growing arrangement or 
swine production contract constitutes a violation of the P&S Act; and 
whether a packer, swine contractor or live poultry dealer has provided 
a reasonable period of time for a grower or a swine producer to remedy 
a breach of contract that could lead to termination of the growing 
arrangement or production contract.


The Farm Bill also instructed the Secretary to promulgate regulations 
to ensure that poultry growers, swine production contract growers and 
livestock producers are afforded the opportunity to fully participate 
in the arbitration process, if they so choose. We are proposing a 
required format for providing poultry growers, swine production 
contract growers, and livestock producers the opportunity to decline 
the use of arbitration in contracts requiring arbitration. We are also 
proposing criteria that we will consider in finding that poultry 
growers, swine production contract growers, and livestock producers 
have a meaningful opportunity to participate fully in the arbitration 
process if they voluntarily agree to do so. We will use these criteria 
to assess the overall fairness of the arbitration process.


In addition to proposing regulations in accordance with the Farm Bill, 
GIPSA is proposing regulations that would prohibit certain conduct 
because it is unfair, unjustly discriminatory or deceptive, in 
violation of the P&S Act. These additional proposed regulations are 
promulgated under the authority of section 407 of the P&S Act and 
complement those required by the Farm Bill to help ensure fair trade 
and competition in the livestock and poultry industries.


These regulations are intended to address the increased use of 
contracting in the marketing and production of livestock and poultry by 
entities under the jurisdiction of the P&S Act, and practices that 
result from the use of market power and alterations in private property 
rights, which violate the spirit and letter of the P&S Act. The effect 
increased contracting has had, and continues to have, on individual 
agricultural producers has significantly changed the industry and the 
rural economy as a whole, making these proposed regulations necessary.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 407 of the P&S Act (7 U.S.C. 228) provides that the Secretary 
``may make such rules, regulations, and orders as may be necessary to 
carry out the provisions of this Act.'' Sections 11005 and 11006 of the 
Farm Bill became effective June 18, 2008, and instruct the Secretary to 
promulgate additional regulations as described in this notice of 
proposed rulemaking.


Alternatives:


The Farm Bill explicitly directs the Secretary to promulgate certain 
regulations. GIPSA determined that additional regulations are necessary 
to provide notice to all regulated entities of types of practices and 
conduct that GIPSA considers ``unfair'' so that regulated entities are 
fully informed of actions or practices that are considered ``unfair'' 
and, therefore, prohibited. Within both the mandatory and discretionary 
regulatory provisions, we considered alternative options.


For example, GIPSA considered shorter notice periods in situations when 
a live poultry dealer suspends delivery of birds to a poultry grower. 
These alternatives would not have provided adequate trust and integrity 
in the livestock and poultry markets. Other alternatives may have been 
more restrictive. We considered prohibiting the use of arbitration to 
resolve disputes; however, that option goes against a popular method of 
dispute resolution in other industries and is not in line with the 
spirit of the 2008 Farm Bill. GIPSA believes that this proposed rule 
represents the best option to level the playing field between packers, 
swine contractors, live poultry dealers, and the Nation's poultry 
growers, swine production contract growers, or livestock producers for 
the benefit of more efficient marketing and public good.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Costs:


Costs are aggregated into three major types: 1) Administrative costs, 
which include items such as office work, postage, filing, and copying; 
2) costs of analysis, such as a business conducting a profit-loss 
analysis; and 3) adjustment costs, such as costs related to changing 
business behavior to achieve compliance with the proposed regulation.


Benefits:


Benefits are also aggregated into three major groups: 1) Increased 
pricing

[[Page 79480]]

efficiency; 2) allocation efficiency; and 3) competitive efficiency.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/22/10                    75 FR 35338
NPRM Comment Period End         08/23/10
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
H. Tess Butler
Regulatory Liaison
Department of Agriculture
Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-7486
Fax: 202 690-2173
Email: h.tess.butler@usda.gov
RIN: 0580-AB07
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Food and Nutrition Service (FNS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

10. ELIGIBILITY, CERTIFICATION, AND EMPLOYMENT AND TRAINING PROVISIONS 
OF THE FOOD, CONSERVATION, AND ENERGY ACT OF 2008

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


PL 110-246; PL 104-121


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 273


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule would amend the regulations governing the 
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to implement 
provisions from the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 
110-246) (FCEA) concerning the eligibility and certification of SNAP 
applicants and participants and SNAP employment and training. In 
addition, this proposed rule would revise the SNAP regulations 
throughout 7 CFR part 273 to change the program name from the Food 
Stamp Program to SNAP and to make other nomenclature changes as 
mandated by the FCEA. The statutory effective date of these provisions 
was October 1, 2008. Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is also proposing 
two discretionary revisions to SNAP regulations to provide State 
agencies options that are currently available only through waivers. 
These provisions would allow State agencies to average student work 
hours and to provide telephone interviews in lieu of face-to-face 
interviews. FNS anticipates that this rule would impact the associated 
paperwork burdens (08-006).


Statement of Need:


This proposed rule would amend the regulations governing SNAP to 
implement provisions from the FCEA concerning the eligibility and 
certification of SNAP applicants and participants and SNAP employment 
and training. In addition, this proposed rule would revise the SNAP 
regulations throughout 7 CFR part 273 to change the program name from 
the Food Stamp Program to SNAP and to make other nomenclature changes 
as mandated by the FCEA. The statutory effective date of these 
provisions was October 1, 2008. FNS is also proposing 2 discretionary 
revisions to SNAP regulations to provide State agencies options that 
are currently available only through waivers. These provisions would 
allow State agencies to average student work hours and to provide 
telephone interviews in lieu of face-to-face interviews. FNS 
anticipates that this rule would impact the associated paperwork 
burdens.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246).


Alternatives:


Because this proposed rule is under development, alternatives are not 
yet articulated. The rule would implement statutory requirements set 
forth by the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 concerning SNAP 
eligibility and certification rules.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FNS is currently developing estimates of the anticipated costs and 
benefits of this rule. Anticipated principle effects would be on 
paperwork burdens.


Risks:


The statutory changes and discretionary ones under consideration would 
streamline program operations. The changes are expected to reduce the 
risk of inefficient operations.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
RIN: 0584-AD87
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FNS

<###DOC>

11. SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITION ASSISTANCE PROGRAM: FARM BILL OF 2008 
RETAILER SANCTIONS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


PL 110-246


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 276


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule would implement provisions under section 4132 of the 
Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, also referred to as the 
Farm Bill of 2008. Under section 4132, the Department of Agriculture's 
Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is provided with greater authority and 
flexibility when sanctioning retail or wholesale food stores that 
violate Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) rules. 
Specifically, the Department is authorized to assess a civil penalty 
and to disqualify a retail or wholesale food

[[Page 79481]]

store authorized to participate in SNAP. Previously, the Department 
could assess a civil penalty or disqualification, but not both. Section 
4132 also eliminates the minimum disqualification period which was 
previously set at 6 months.


In addition to implementing statutory provisions, this rule proposes to 
provide a clear administrative penalty when an authorized retailer or 
wholesale food store redeems a SNAP participant's Program benefits 
without the knowledge of the participant. All Program benefits are 
issued through the Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) system. The EBT 
system establishes data that may be used to identify fraud committed by 
retail food stores. While stealing Program benefits could be prosecuted 
under current statute, Program regulations do not provide a clear 
penalty for these thefts. The proposed rule would establish an 
administrative penalty for such thefts equivalent to the penalty for 
trafficking in Program benefits, which is the permanent 
disqualification of a retailer or wholesale food store from SNAP 
participation.


Finally, the Department proposes to identify additional administrative 
retail violations and the associated sanction that would be imposed 
against the retail food store for committing the violation. For 
instance, to maintain integrity, FNS requires retail and wholesale food 
stores to key enter EBT card data in the presence of the actual EBT 
card.


The proposed rule would codify this requirement and identify the 
specific sanction that would be imposed if retail food stores are found 
to be in violation (08-007).


Statement of Need:


This proposed rule would implement provisions under section 4132 of the 
Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008, also referred to as the 
Farm Bill of 2008. Under section 4132, the Department of Agriculture's 
Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) is provided with greater authority and 
flexibility when sanctioning retail or wholesale food stores that 
violate Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) rules. 
Specifically, the Department is authorized to assess a civil penalty 
and to disqualify a retail or wholesale food store authorized to 
participate in SNAP. Previously, the Department could assess a civil 
penalty or disqualification, but not both. Section 4132 also eliminates 
the minimum disqualification period which was previously set at six 
months. In addition to implementing statutory provisions, this rule 
proposes to provide a clear administrative penalty when an authorized 
retailer or wholesale food store redeems a SNAP participant's Program 
benefits without the knowledge of the participant. All Program benefits 
are issued through the Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) system. The 
EBT system establishes data that may be used to identify fraud 
committed by retail food stores. While stealing Program benefits could 
be prosecuted under current statute, Program regulations do not provide 
a clear penalty for these thefts. The proposed rule would establish an 
administrative penalty for such thefts equivalent to the penalty for 
trafficking in Program benefits, which is the permanent 
disqualification of a retailer or wholesale food store from SNAP 
participation. Finally, the Department proposes to identify additional 
administrative retail violations and the associated sanction that would 
be imposed against the retail food store for committing the violation. 
For instance, to maintain integrity, FNS requires retail and wholesale 
food stores to key enter EBT card data in the presence of the actual 
EBT card. The proposed rule would codify this requirement and identify 
the specific sanction that would be imposed if retail food stores are 
found to be in violation.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 4132, Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-
246).


Alternatives:


Because this proposed rule is under development alternatives are not 
yet articulated.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because this proposed rule is under development anticipated costs and 
benefits have not yet been articulated.


Risks:


The risk that retail or wholesale food stores will violate SNAP rules, 
or continue to violate SNAP rules, is expected to be reduced by 
refining program sanctions for participating retailers and wholesalers.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Additional Information:


Note: This RIN replaces the previously issued RIN 0584-AD78.


Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
RIN: 0584-AD88
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FNS

<###DOC>

12. FRESH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008; National School Lunch Act 
(NSLA); 42 USC 1769(a)


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 211


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 amended the National 
School Lunch Act (NSLA) to add section 19, the Fresh Fruit and 
Vegetable Program (FFVP). Section 19 establishes the FFVP as a 
permanent national program in a select number of schools in each State, 
the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. 
Schools in all States must apply annually for FFVP funding.


This proposed rule would implement statutory requirements currently 
established through program policy and guidance for operators at the 
State and local level. The proposed rule would set forth requirements 
detailed in the statute for school selection and participation, State 
agency outreach to needy schools, the yearly application process, and 
the funding and allocation processes for schools and States. The 
proposed rule would also include the statutory per student funding 
range and the requirement for a program evaluation.

[[Page 79482]]

In addition, the proposed rule would establish oversight activity and 
reporting and recordkeeping requirements that are not included in FFVP 
statutory requirements. Implementation of this rule is not expected to 
result in expenses for program operators because they receive funding 
to cover food purchases and administrative costs (09-007).


Statement of Need:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 amended the National 
School Lunch Act (NSLA) to add section 19, the Fresh Fruit and 
Vegetable Program (FFVP). Section 19 establishes the FFVP as a 
permanent national program in a select number of schools in each State, 
the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. 
Schools in all States must apply annually for FFVP funding. This 
proposed rule would implement statutory requirements currently 
established through program policy and guidance for operators at the 
State and local level. The proposed rule would set forth requirements 
detailed in the statute for school selection and participation, State 
agency outreach to needy schools, the yearly application process, and 
the funding and allocation processes for schools and States. The 
proposed rule would also include the statutory per student funding 
range and the requirement for a program evaluation.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 19, Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008. National School 
Lunch Act (NSLA). 42 U.S.C. 1769(a).


Alternatives:


Because this proposed rule is under development, alternatives are not 
yet articulated. The rule would implement statutory requirements set 
forth by the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 by adding 
section 19, the Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP), to the 
National School Lunch Act. Alternatives to this process are not known 
or being pursued at this time.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Implementation of this rule is not expected to result in expenses for 
program operators because they receive funding to cover food purchases 
and administrative costs.


Risks:


No risks by implementing this proposed rule have been identified at 
this time.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            02/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         04/00/11
Final Action                    08/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
RIN: 0584-AD96
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FNS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

13. CHILD AND ADULT CARE FOOD PROGRAM: IMPROVING MANAGEMENT AND PROGRAM 
INTEGRITY

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


42 USC 1766; PL 103-448; PL 104-193; PL 105-336


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 226


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule amends the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) 
regulations. The changes in this rule result from the findings of State 
and Federal program reviews and from audits and investigations 
conducted by the Office of Inspector General. This rule revises: State 
agency criteria for approving and renewing institution applications; 
program training and other operating requirements for child care 
institutions and facilities; and State and institution-level monitoring 
requirements. This rule also includes changes that are required by the 
Healthy Meals for Healthy Americans Act of 1994 (Pub. L. 103-448), the 
Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act of 
1996 (Pub. L. 104-193), and the William F. Goodling Child Nutrition 
Reauthorization Act of 1998 (Pub. L. 105-336).


The changes are designed to improve program operations and monitoring 
at the State and institution levels and, where possible, to streamline 
and simplify program requirements for State agencies and institutions 
(95-024).


Statement of Need:


In recent years, State and Federal program reviews have found numerous 
cases of mismanagement, abuse, and, in some instances, fraud by child 
care institutions and facilities in the CACFP. These reviews revealed 
weaknesses in management controls over program operations and examples 
of regulatory noncompliance by institutions, including failure to pay 
facilities or failure to pay them in a timely manner; improper use of 
program funds for non-program expenditures; and improper meal 
reimbursements due to incorrect meal counts or to mis-characterized or 
incomplete income eligibility statements. In addition, audits and 
investigations conducted by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) have 
raised serious concerns regarding the adequacy of financial and 
administrative controls in CACFP. Based on its findings, the OIG 
recommended changes to CACFP review requirements and management 
controls.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Some of the changes proposed in the rule are discretionary changes 
being made in response to deficiencies found in program reviews and OIG 
audits. Other changes codify statutory changes made by the Healthy 
Meals for Healthy Americans Act of 1994 (Pub. L. 103-448), the Personal 
Responsibility and Work Opportunities Reconciliation Act of 1996 (Pub. 
L. 104-193), and the William F. Goodling Child Nutrition 
Reauthorization Act of 1998 (Pub. L. 105-336).


Alternatives:


This proposed interim final rule is under development and alternatives 
are not yet articulated. FNS is working with State agencies to identify 
reasonable alternatives to implement the changes mandated by law. FNS 
will be developing extensive guidance materials in conjunction with 
agency

[[Page 79483]]

cooperators to meet the objectives of the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


This rule contains changes designed to improve management and financial 
integrity in the CACFP. When implemented, these changes would affect 
all entities in CACFP, from USDA to participating children and 
children's households. These changes will primarily affect the 
procedures used by State agencies in reviewing applications submitted 
by, and monitoring the performance of, institutions which are 
participating or wish to participate in the CACFP. Those changes which 
would affect institutions and facilities will not, in the aggregate, 
have a significant economic impact.


Data on CACFP integrity is limited, despite numerous OIG reports on 
individual institutions and facilities that have been deficient in 
CACFP management. While program reviews and OIG reports clearly 
illustrate that there are weaknesses in parts of the program 
regulations and that there have been weaknesses in oversight, neither 
program reviews, OIG reports, nor any other data sources illustrate the 
prevalence and magnitude of CACFP fraud and abuse. This lack of 
information precludes USDA from estimating the amount of money lost due 
to fraud and abuse or the reduction in fraud and abuse the changes in 
this rule will realize.


Risks:


With the interim final rule in place and operational, risk of integrity 
problems is reduced. The final rule will use comments from stakeholders 
to further improve the rule.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/12/00                    65 FR 55103
NPRM Comment Period End         12/11/00
Interim Final Rule              06/27/02                    67 FR 43448
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   07/29/02
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          12/24/02
Interim Final Rule              09/01/04                    69 FR 53502
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   10/01/04
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          09/01/05
Final Action                    02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
Related RIN: Merged with 0584-AC94
RIN: 0584-AC24
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FNS

<###DOC>

14. DIRECT CERTIFICATION OF CHILDREN IN FOOD STAMP HOUSEHOLDS AND 
CERTIFICATION OF HOMELESS, MIGRANT, AND RUNAWAY CHILDREN FOR FREE MEALS 
IN THE NSLP, SBP, AND SMP

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 108-265, sec 104


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 210; 7 CFR 215; 7 CFR 220; 7 CFR 245


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


In response to Public Law 108-265, which amended the Richard B. Russell 
National School Lunch Act, 7 CFR 245, Determining Eligibility for Free 
and Reduced Price Meals and Free Milk in Schools, will be amended to 
establish categorical (automatic) eligibility for free meals and free 
milk upon documentation that a child is (1) homeless as defined by the 
McKinney-Vento Homeless Assistance Act; (2) a runaway served by grant 
programs under the Runaway and Homeless Youth Act; or (3) migratory as 
defined in section 1309(2) of the Elementary and Secondary Education 
Act. The rule also requires phase-in of mandatory direct certification 
for children who are members of households receiving food stamps and 
continues discretionary direct certification for other categorically 
eligible children (04-018).


Statement of Need:


The changes made to the Richard B. Russell National School Lunch Act 
concerning direct certification are intended to improve program access, 
reduce paperwork, and improve the accuracy of the delivery of free meal 
benefits. This regulation will implement the statutory changes and 
provide State agencies and local educational agencies with the policies 
and procedures to conduct mandatory and discretionary direct 
certification.


Summary of Legal Basis:


These changes are being made in response to provisions in Public Law 
108-265.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


This regulation will reduce paperwork, target benefits more precisely, 
and will improve program access of eligible school children.


Risks:


This regulation may require adjustments to existing computer systems to 
more readily share information between schools, food stamp offices, and 
other agencies.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              02/00/11
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          05/00/11
Final Action                    10/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
Related RIN: Merged with 0584-AD62
RIN: 0584-AD60

[[Page 79484]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FNS

<###DOC>

15. SPECIAL SUPPLEMENTAL NUTRITION PROGRAM FOR WOMEN, INFANTS, AND 
CHILDREN (WIC): REVISIONS IN THE WIC FOOD PACKAGES

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


42 USC 1786


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 246


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 2006.


CN and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004 (Pub. L. 108-265) requires 
issuance of a final rule within 18 months of release of IOM Report.


Abstract:


This final rule will affirm and address comments from stakeholders on 
the interim final rule that went into effect October 1, 2009, and for 
which the comment period ended February 1, 2010. Significant changes to 
the rule are not anticipated. The rule amended regulations governing 
the WIC food packages to align them more closely with updated nutrition 
science and the infant feeding practice guidelines of the American 
Academy of Pediatrics, promote and support more effectively the 
establishment of successful long-term breastfeeding, provide WIC 
participants with a wider variety of food, and provide WIC State 
agencies with greater flexibility in prescribing food packages to 
accommodate participants with cultural food preferences. The final rule 
considers public comments submitted on the impacts of the changes and 
how they might be refined to assist State agencies and recipients.


Statement of Need:


As the population served by WIC has grown and become more diverse over 
the past 20 years, the nutritional risks faced by participants have 
changed, and though nutrition science has advanced, the WIC 
supplemental food packages have remained largely unchanged. A rule is 
needed to implement recommended changes to the WIC food packages based 
on the current nutritional needs of WIC participants and advances in 
nutrition science.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Child Nutrition and WIC Reauthorization Act of 2004, enacted on 
June 30, 2004, requires the Department to issue a final rule within 18 
months of receiving the Institute of Medicine's report on revisions to 
the WIC food packages. This report was published and released to the 
public on April 27, 2005.


Alternatives:


FNS developed a regulatory impact analysis that addressed a variety of 
alternatives that were considered in the interim final rulemaking. The 
regulatory impact analysis was published as an appendix to the interim 
rule. FNS developed a regulatory impact analysis that addressed a 
variety of alternatives that were considered in the interim final 
rulemaking. That regulatory impact analysis was published as an 
appendix to the interim rule.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The regulatory impact analysis for this rule provided a reasonable 
estimate of the anticipated effects of the rule. This analysis 
estimated that the provisions of the rule would have a minimal impact 
on the costs of overall operations of the WIC Program over 5 years. The 
regulatory impact analysis was published as an appendix to the interim 
rule.


Risks:


This rule applies to WIC State agencies with respect to their selection 
of foods to be included on their food lists. As a result, vendors will 
be indirectly affected and the food industry will realize increased 
sales of some foods and decreases in other foods, with an overall 
neutral effect on sales nationally. The rule may have an indirect 
economic affect on certain small businesses because they may have to 
carry a larger variety of certain foods to be eligible for 
authorization as a WIC vendor. With the high degree of State 
flexibility allowable under this final rule, small vendors will be 
impacted differently in each State depending upon how that State 
chooses to meet the new requirements. It is, therefore, not feasible to 
accurately estimate the rule's impact on small vendors. Since neither 
FNS nor the State agencies regulate food producers under the WIC 
Program, it is not known how many small entities within that industry 
may be indirectly affected by the rule. FNS has, however, modified the 
new food provision in an effort to mitigate the impact on small 
entities. This rule adds new food items, such as fruits and vegetables 
and whole grain breads, which may require some WIC vendors, 
particularly smaller stores, to expand the types and quantities of food 
items stocked in order to maintain their WIC authorization. In 
addition, vendors also have to make available more than one food type 
from each WIC food category, except for the categories of peanut butter 
and eggs, which may be a change for some vendors. To mitigate the 
impact of the fruit and vegetable requirement, the rule allows canned, 
frozen, and dried fruits and vegetables to be substituted for fresh 
produce. Opportunities for training on and discussion of the revised 
WIC food packages will be offered to State agencies and other entities 
as necessary.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            08/07/06                    71 FR 44784
NPRM Comment Period End         11/06/06
Interim Final Rule              12/06/07                    72 FR 68966
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   02/04/08
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          02/01/10
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State, Tribal


URL For More Information:
www.fns.usda.gov/wic

URL For Public Comments:
www.fns.usda.gov/wic

Agency Contact:
James F. Herbert
Regulatory Review Specialist
Department of Agriculture
Food and Nutrition Service
10th Floor
3101 Park Center Drive
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: 703 305-2572
Email: james.herbert@fns.usda.gov
RIN: 0584-AD77

[[Page 79485]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

16. EGG PRODUCTS INSPECTION REGULATIONS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


21 USC 1031 to 1056


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 590.570; 9 CFR 590.575; 9 CFR 590.146; 9 CFR 590.10; 9 CFR 
590.411; 9 CFR 590.502; 9 CFR 590.504; 9 CFR 590.580; 9 CFR 591; . . .


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is proposing to require 
egg products plants and establishments that pasteurize shell eggs to 
develop and implement Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points 
(HACCP) systems and Sanitation (SOPs). FSIS also is proposing pathogen 
reduction performance standards that would be applicable to egg 
products and pasteurized shell eggs. FSIS is proposing to amend the 
Federal egg products inspection regulations by removing current 
requirements for prior approval by FSIS of egg products plant drawings, 
specifications, and equipment prior to their use in official plants. 
The Agency also plans to eliminate the prior label approval system for 
egg products. This proposal will not encompass shell egg packers. In 
the near future, FSIS will initiate non-regulatory outreach efforts for 
shell egg packers that will provide information intended to help them 
safely process shell eggs intended for human consumption or further 
processing.


Statement of Need:


The actions being proposed are part of FSIS' regulatory reform effort 
to improve FSIS' shell egg and egg products food safety regulations, 
better define the roles of Government and the regulated industry, 
encourage innovations that will improve food safety, remove unnecessary 
regulatory burdens on inspected egg products plants, and make the egg 
products regulations as consistent as possible with the Agency's meat 
and poultry products regulations. FSIS also is taking these actions in 
light of changing inspection priorities and recent findings of 
Salmonella in pasteurized egg products.


This proposal is directly related to FSIS' PR/HACCP initiative.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This proposed rule is authorized under the Egg Products Inspection Act 
(21 U.S.C. 1031 to 1056). It is not the result of any specific mandate 
by the Congress or a Federal court.


Alternatives:


A team of FSIS economists and food technologists is conducting a cost-
benefit analysis to evaluate the potential economic impacts of several 
alternatives on the public, egg products industry, and FSIS. These 
alternatives include: (1) Taking no regulatory action; (2) requiring 
all inspected egg products plants to develop, adopt, and implement 
written sanitation SOPs and HACCP plans; and (3) converting to a 
lethality-based pathogen reduction performance standard many of the 
current highly prescriptive egg products processing requirements. The 
team will consider the effects of a uniform, across-the-board standard 
for all egg products; a performance standard based on the relative risk 
of different classes of egg products; and a performance standard based 
on the relative risks to public health of different production 
processes.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FSIS is analyzing the potential costs of this proposed rulemaking to 
industry, FSIS, and other Federal agencies, State and local 
governments, small entities, and foreign countries. The expected costs 
to industry will depend on a number of factors. These costs include the 
required lethality, or level of pathogen reduction, and the cost of 
HACCP plan and sanitation SOP development, implementation, and 
associated employee training. The pathogen reduction costs will depend 
on the amount of reduction sought and on the classes of product, 
product formulations, or processes.


Relative enforcement costs to FSIS and Food and Drug Administration may 
change because the two agencies share responsibility for inspection and 
oversight of the egg industry and a common farm-to-table approach for 
shell egg and egg products food safety. Other Federal agencies and 
local governments are not likely to be affected.


Egg product inspection systems of foreign countries wishing to export 
egg products to the U.S. must be equivalent to the U.S. system. FSIS 
will consult with these countries, as needed, if and when this proposal 
becomes effective.


This proposal is not likely to have a significant impact on small 
entities. The entities that would be directly affected by this proposal 
would be the approximately 80 federally inspected egg products plants, 
most of which are small businesses, according to Small Business 
Administration criteria. If necessary, FSIS will develop compliance 
guides to assist these small firms in implementing the proposed 
requirements.


Potential benefits associated with this rulemaking include: 
Improvements in human health due to pathogen reduction; improved 
utilization of FSIS inspection program resources; and cost savings 
resulting from the flexibility of egg products plants in achieving a 
lethality-based pathogen reduction performance standard. Once specific 
alternatives are identified, economic analysis will identify the 
quantitative and qualitative benefits associated with each alternative.


Human health benefits from this rulemaking are likely to be small 
because of the low level of (chiefly post-processing) contamination of 
pasteurized egg products. In light of recent scientific studies that 
raise questions about the efficacy of current regulations, however, it 
is likely that measurable reductions will be achieved in the risk of 
foodborne illness.


The preliminary anticipated annualized costs of the proposed action are 
approximately $7 million. The preliminary anticipated benefits of the 
proposed action are approximately $90 million per year.


Risks:


FSIS believes that this regulatory action may result in a further 
reduction in the risks associated with egg products. The development of 
a lethality-based pathogen reduction performance standard for egg 
products, replacing command-and-control regulations, will remove 
unnecessary regulatory obstacles to, and provide incentives for, 
innovation to improve the safety of egg products.


To assess the potential risk-reduction impacts of this rulemaking on 
the

[[Page 79486]]

public, an intra-Agency group of scientific and technical experts is 
conducting a risk management analysis. The group has been charged with 
identifying the lethality requirement sufficient to ensure the safety 
of egg products and the alternative methods for implementing the 
requirement. FSIS has developed new risk assessments for Salmonella 
Enteritidis in eggs and for Salmonella spp. in liquid egg products to 
evaluate the risk associated with the regulatory alternatives.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Victoria Levine
Program Analyst, Policy Issuances Division
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-5627
Fax: 202 690-0486
Email: victoria.levine@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AC58
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

17. NEW POULTRY SLAUGHTER INSPECTION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 451 et seq


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 381.66; 9 CFR 381.67; 9 CFR 381.76; 9 CFR 381.83; 9 CFR 381.91; 9 
CFR 381.94


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


FSIS is proposing a new inspection system for young poultry slaughter 
establishments that would facilitate public health-based inspection. 
This new system would be available initially only to young chicken 
slaughter establishments. Establishments that slaughter broilers, 
fryers, roasters, and Cornish game hens (as defined in 9 CFR 381.170) 
would be considered as ``young chicken establishments.'' FSIS is also 
proposing to revoke the provisions that allow young chicken slaughter 
establishments to operate under the current Streamlined Inspection 
System (SIS) or the New Line Speed (NELS) Inspection System. The 
proposed rule would establish new performance standards to reduce 
pathogens. FSIS anticipates that this proposed rule would provide the 
framework for action to provide public health-based inspection in all 
establishments that slaughter amenable poultry species.


Under the proposed new system, young chicken slaughter establishments 
would be required to sort chicken carcasses and to conduct other 
activities to ensure that carcasses are not adulterated before they 
enter the chilling tank.


Statement of Need:


Because of the risk to the public health associated with pathogens on 
young chicken carcasses, FSIS is proposing a new inspection system that 
would allow for more effective inspection of young chicken carcasses, 
would allow the Agency to more effectively allocate its resources, 
would encourage industry to more readily use new technology, and would 
include new performance standards to reduce pathogens.


This proposed rule is an example of regulatory reform because it would 
facilitate technological innovation in young chicken slaughter 
establishments. It would likely result in more cost-effective dressing 
of young chickens that are ready to cook or ready for further 
processing. Similarly, it would likely result in more efficient and 
effective use of Agency resources.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Secretary of Agriculture is charged by the Poultry Products 
Inspection Act (PPIA--21 U.S.C. 451 et seq.) with carrying out a 
mandatory poultry products inspection program. The Act requires post-
mortem inspection of all carcasses of slaughtered poultry subject to 
the Act and such reinspection as deemed necessary (21 U.S.C. 455(b)). 
The Secretary is authorized to promulgate such rules and regulations as 
are necessary to carry out the provisions of the Act (21 U.S.C. 
463(b)). The Agency has tentatively determined that this rule would 
facilitate FSIS post-mortem inspection of young chicken carcasses. The 
proposed new system would likely result in more efficient and effective 
use of Agency resources and in industry innovations.


Alternatives:


FSIS considered the following options in developing this proposal:


1) No action.


2) Propose to implement HACCP-Based Inspection Models Pilot in 
regulations.


3) Propose to establish a mandatory, rather than a voluntary, new 
inspection system for young chicken slaughter establishments.


4) Propose standards of identity regulations for young chickens that 
include trim and processing defect criteria and that take into account 
the intended use of the product.


5) Propose a voluntary new inspection system for young chicken 
slaughter establishments and propose standards of identity for whole 
chickens, regardless of the products' intended use.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The proposed performance standards and the implementation of public 
health-based inspection would likely improve the public health. FSIS is 
conducting a risk assessment for this proposed rule to assess the 
likely public health benefits that the implementation of this rule may 
achieve.


Establishments that volunteer for this proposed new inspection system 
alternative would likely need to make capital investments in facilities 
and equipment. They may also need to add labor (trained employees). 
However, one of the beneficial effects of these investments would 
likely be the lowering of the average cost per pound to dress poultry 
properly. Cost savings would likely result because of increased line 
speeds, increased productivity, and increased flexibility to industry. 
The expected lower average unit cost for dressing poultry would likely 
give a marketing advantage to establishments under the new system. 
Consumers would likely benefit from lower retail prices for high 
quality poultry products. The rule would also likely provide 
opportunities for the industry to innovate because of the increased 
flexibility it would allow poultry slaughter establishments. In 
addition, in the public sector, benefits would accrue to FSIS from the 
more effective deployment of FSIS inspection program personnel to 
verify process

[[Page 79487]]

control based on risk factors at each establishment.


Risks:


Salmonella and other pathogens are present on a substantial portion of 
poultry carcasses inspected by FSIS. Foodborne Salmonella cause a large 
number of human illnesses that at times lead to hospitalization and 
even death. There is an apparent relationship between human illness and 
prevalence levels for salmonella in young chicken carcasses. FSIS 
believes that through better allocation of inspection resources and the 
use of performance standards, it would be able to reduce the prevalence 
of salmonella and other pathogens in young chickens.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            10/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Dr. Daniel L. Engeljohn
Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Policy and Program 
Development
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 205-0495
Fax: 202 401-1760
Email: daniel.engeljohn@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AD32
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

18. MANDATORY INSPECTION OF CATFISH AND CATFISH PRODUCTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 601 et seq; PL 110-249, sec 11016


CFR Citation:


9 CFR ch III, subchapter F (new)


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, December 2009, Final regulations NLT 18 months after 
enactment of PL 110-246.


Abstract:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246, sec. 
11016), known as the 2008 Farm Bill, amended the Federal Meat 
Inspection Act (FMIA) to make catfish an amenable species under the 
FMIA. Amenable species must be inspected, so this rule will define 
inspection requirements for catfish. The regulations will define 
``catfish'' and the scope of coverage of the regulations to apply to 
establishments that process farm-raised species of catfish and to 
catfish and catfish products. The regulations will take into account 
the conditions under which the catfish are raised and transported to a 
processing establishment.


Statement of Need:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246, sec. 
11016), known as the 2008 Farm Bill, amended the Federal Meat 
Inspection Act (FMIA) to make catfish an amenable species under the 
FMIA. The Farm Bill directs the Department to issue final regulations 
implementing the FMIA amendments not later than 18 months after the 
enactment date (June 18, 2008) of the legislation.


Summary of Legal Basis:


21 U.S.C. 601 to 695 and Public Law 110-246, section 11016


Alternatives:


The option of no rulemaking is unavailable. The Agency has considered 
alternative methods of implementation and levels of stringency, and the 
effects on foreign and domestic commerce and on small business 
associated with the alternatives.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FSIS anticipates benefits from uniform standards and the more extensive 
and intensive inspection service that FSIS provides (compared with 
current voluntary inspection programs). FSIS would apply requirements 
for imported catfish that would be equivalent to those applying to 
catfish raised and processed in the United States.


Risks:


In preparing regulations on catfish and catfish products, the Agency 
will consider any risks to public health or other pertinent risks 
associated with the production, processing, and distribution of the 
products. FSIS will determine, through scientific risk assessment 
procedures, the magnitude of the risks associated with catfish and how 
they compare with those associated with other foods in FSIS's 
jurisdiction.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Quita Bowman Blackwell
Acting Assistant Administrator, Office of Catfish Inspection Program
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-5735
Fax: 202 690-1742
RIN: 0583-AD36
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

19. ELECTRONIC IMPORTED PRODUCT INSPECTION APPLICATIONS; ELECTRONIC 
FOREIGN IMPORTED PRODUCT AND FOREIGN ESTABLISHMENT CERTIFICATIONS; 
DELETION OF STREAMLINED INSPECTION PROCEDURES FOR CANADIAN PRODUCT

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 USC 601 to 695), the Poultry 
Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 USC 451 to 470); Egg Products 
Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 USC 1031 to 1056)


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 304.3; 9 CFR 327.2 and 327.4; 9 CFR 381.196 to 381.198; 9 CFR 
590.915 and 590.920


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


FSIS is proposing to amend the meat, poultry, and egg products import 
inspection regulations to provide for an electronic application, and 
electronic imported product and foreign establishment certification 
system. FSIS

[[Page 79488]]

is also proposing to delete the ``streamlined'' import inspection 
procedures for Canadian product. In addition, the Agency is proposing 
that official import inspection establishment must develop, implement, 
and maintain written Sanitation SOPs, as provided in 9 CFR 416.11 
through 416.17.


Statement of Need:


FSIS is proposing these regulations to provide for the electronic 
import system, which will be available through the Agency's Public 
Health Information System (PHIS), a computerized, Web-based inspection 
information system. The import system will enable applicants to 
electronically submit and track import inspection applications that are 
required for all commercial entries of FSIS regulated products imported 
in to the U.S. FSIS inspection program personnel will be able to access 
the PHIS system to assign appropriate imported product inspection 
activities. The electronic import system will also facilitate the 
foreign imported product and annual foreign establishment 
certifications by providing immediate and direct electronic government-
to-government exchange of information. The Agency is proposing to 
delete the Canadian streamlined import inspection procedures because 
they have not been in use since 1990 and are obsolete. Sanitation SOPs 
are written procedures establishments develop, implement, and maintain 
to prevent direct contamination or adulteration of meat or poultry 
products. To ensure that imported meat and poultry products do not 
become contaminated while undergoing reinspection prior to entering the 
U.S., FSIS is proposing to clarify that official import inspection 
establishments must develop written Sanitation SOPs.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The authorities for this proposed rule are: the Federal Meat Inspection 
Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601 to 695), the Poultry Products Inspection Act 
(PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451 to 470), Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA)(21 
U.S.C. 1031 to 1056) and the regulations that implement these Acts.


Alternatives:


The use of the electronic import system is voluntary. The Agency will 
continue to accept and process paper import inspection applications, 
and foreign establishment and foreign imported product certificates. 
The Canadian streamlined import inspection procedures are not currently 
in use. Proposing Sanitation SOPs in official import inspection 
establishments will prevent direct contamination or adulteration of 
product. Therefore, no alternatives were considered.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Under this proposed rule, the industry will have the option of filing 
inspection applications electronically and submitting electronic 
foreign product and establishment certificates through the PHIS. Since 
the electronic option is voluntary; applicants and the foreign 
countries that choose to file electronically will do so only if the 
benefits outweigh the cost. Sanitation (SOPs) are a condition of 
approval for official import inspection establishments, and as a 
requirement for official import inspection establishments to continue 
to operate under Federal inspection. The proposed rule will clarify 
that official import inspection establishments must have developed 
written Sanitation SOPs before being granted approval and that existing 
official import inspection establishments must meet Sanitation SOP 
requirements. Since, in practice, FSIS has always expected official 
import inspection establishments to maintain Sanitation SOPs during the 
reinspection of imported products, the proposed amendment for these 
sanitation requirements will have little, if any, cost impact on the 
industry.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Mary Stanley
Director, International Policy Division Office of Policy and Program
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
Room 2125
1400 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-0287
RIN: 0583-AD39
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

20. ELECTRONIC EXPORT APPLICATION AND CERTIFICATION AS A REIMBURSABLE 
SERVICE AND FLEXIBILITY IN THE REQUIREMENTS FOR OFFICIAL EXPORT 
INSPECTION MARKS, DEVICES, AND CERTIFICATES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 USC 601 to 695); Poultry 
Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 USC 451 to 470); Egg Products 
Inspection Act (EPIA) (21 USC 1031 to 1056)


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 312.8; 9 CFR 322.1 and 322.2; 9 CFR 350.7; 9 CFR 362.5; 9 CFR 
381.104 to 381.106; 9 CFR 590.407; 9 CFR 592.20 and 592.500


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is proposing to amend the 
meat, poultry, and egg product inspection regulations to provide an 
electronic export application and certification process. FSIS is 
proposing to charge users for the use of the proposed system. FSIS is 
also proposing to provide establishments that export meat, poultry, and 
egg products with flexibility in the official export inspection marks, 
devices, and certificates. In addition, FSIS is proposing egg product 
export regulations that parallel the meat and poultry export 
regulations.


Statement of Need:


FSIS is proposing these regulations to facilitate the electronic 
processing of export applications and certificates through the Public 
Health Information System (PHIS), a computerized, Web-based inspection 
information system. The current export application and

[[Page 79489]]

certification regulations provide only for a paper-based process. This 
proposed rule will provide this electronic export system as a 
reimbursable certification service charged to the exporter.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The authorities for this proposed rule are: The Federal Meat Inspection 
Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601 to 695), the Poultry Products Inspection Act 
(PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451 to 470), the Egg Products Inspection Act (EPIA) 
(21 U.S.C. 1031 to 1056), and the regulations that implement these 
Acts. FSIS is proposing to charge for the electronic export application 
and certification system under the Agricultural Marketing Act (7 U.S.C. 
1622(h)) that provides the Secretary of Agriculture with the authority 
to: ``Inspect, certify, and identify the class, quality, quantity, and 
condition of agricultural products when shipped or received in 
interstate commerce, under such rules and regulations as the Secretary 
of Agriculture may prescribe, including assessment and collection of 
such fees as will be reasonable and as nearly as may be to cover the 
cost of the service rendered, to the end that agricultural products may 
be marketed to the best advantage, that trading may be facilitated, and 
that consumers may be able to obtain the quality product which they 
desire.``


Alternatives:


The electronic export applications and certification system is being 
proposed as a voluntary service, therefore, exporters have the option 
of continuing to use the current paper-based system. Therefore, no 
alternatives were considered.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FSIS is proposing to charge exporters that choose to utilize the system 
$90.00 per application submitted. Automating the export application and 
certification process will facilitate the exportation of U.S. meat, 
poultry, and egg products by streamlining and automating the processes 
that are in use while ensuring that foreign regulatory requirements are 
met. The direct cost to exporters would be approximately $22.5 million 
to $31.5 million per year, if they choose to file electronically. 
However, the total cost to an exporter would depend on the number of 
electronic applications processed. An exporter that processes only a 
few applications per year would not be likely to experience a 
significant economic impact. Under this proposal, inspection personnel 
workload is reduced through the elimination of the physical handling 
and processing of applications and certificates. When an electronic 
government-to-government system interface or data exchange is used, 
fraudulent transactions, such as false alterations and reproductions, 
will be significantly reduced, if not eliminated. The electronic export 
system is designed to ensure authenticity, integrity, and 
confidentiality. Exporters will be provided a more efficient and 
effective application and certification process. The proposed egg 
product export regulations provide the same export requirements across 
all products regulated by FSIS and consistency in the export 
application and certification process.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Dr. Ron Jones
Assistant Administrator, Office of International Affairs
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-3473
RIN: 0583-AD41
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

21. PERFORMANCE STANDARDS FOR THE PRODUCTION OF PROCESSED MEAT AND 
POULTRY PRODUCTS; CONTROL OF LISTERIA MONOCYTOGENES IN READY-TO-EAT 
MEAT AND POULTRY PRODUCTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 451 et seq; 21 USC 601 et seq


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 301; 9 CFR 303; 9 CFR 317; 9 CFR 318; 9 CFR 319; 9 CFR 320; 9 CFR 
325; 9 CFR 331; 9 CFR 381; 9 CFR 417; 9 CFR 430; 9 CFR 431


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


FSIS has proposed to establish pathogen reduction performance standards 
for all ready-to-eat (RTE) and partially heat-treated meat and poultry 
products, and measures, including testing, to control Listeria 
monocytogenes in RTE products. The performance standards spell out the 
objective level of pathogen reduction that establishments must meet 
during their operations in order to produce safe products, but allow 
the use of customized, plant-specific processing procedures other than 
those prescribed in the earlier regulations. With HACCP, food safety 
performance standards give establishments the incentive and flexibility 
to adopt innovative, science-based food safety processing procedures 
and controls, while providing objective, measurable standards that can 
be verified by Agency inspectional oversight. This set of performance 
standards will include and be consistent with standards already in 
place for certain ready-to-eat meat and poultry products.


Statement of Need:


Although FSIS routinely samples and tests some ready-to-eat products 
for the presence of pathogens prior to distribution, there are no 
specific regulatory pathogen reduction requirements for most of these 
products. The proposed performance standards are necessary to help 
ensure

[[Page 79490]]

the safety of these products; give establishments the incentive and 
flexibility to adopt innovative, science-based food safety processing 
procedures and controls; and provide objective, measurable standards 
that can be verified by Agency oversight.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 601 to 695) and the 
Poultry Product Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 451 to 470), FSIS issues 
regulations governing the production of meat and poultry products 
prepared for distribution in commerce. The regulations, along with FSIS 
inspection programs, are designed to ensure that meat and poultry 
products are safe, not adulterated, and properly marked, labeled, and 
packaged.


Alternatives:


As an alternative to all of the proposed requirements, FSIS considered 
taking no action. As alternatives to the proposed performance standard 
requirements, FSIS considered end-product testing and requiring ``use-
by'' date labeling on ready-to-eat products.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Benefits are expected to result from fewer contaminated products 
entering commercial food distribution channels as a result of improved 
sanitation and process controls and in-plant verification. FSIS 
believes that the benefits of the rule would exceed the total costs of 
implementing its provisions. FSIS currently estimates net benefits from 
the 2003 interim final rule at $470 to $575 million, with annual 
recurring costs at $150.4 million, if FSIS discounts the capital cost 
at 7 percent. FSIS is continuing to analyze the potential impact of the 
other provisions of the proposal.


The other main provisions of the proposed rule are: Lethality 
performance standards for Salmonella and E. coli O157:H7 and 
stabilization performance standards for C. perfringens that firms must 
meet when producing RTE meat and poultry products. Most of the costs of 
these requirements would be associated with one-time process 
performance validation in the first year of implementation of the rule 
and with revision of HACCP plans. Benefits are expected to result from 
the entry into commercial food distribution channels of product with 
lower levels of contamination resulting from improved in-plant process 
verification and sanitation. Consequently, there will be fewer cases of 
foodborne illness.


Risks:


Before FSIS published the proposed rule, FDA and FSIS had estimated 
that each year L. monocytogenes caused 2,540 cases of foodborne 
illness, including 500 fatalities. The Agencies estimated that about 
65.3 percent of these cases, or 1660 cases and 322 deaths per year, 
were attributable to RTE meat and poultry products. The analysis of the 
interim final rule on control of L. monocytogenes conservatively 
estimated that implementation of the rule would lead to an annual 
reduction of 27.3 deaths and 136.7 illnesses at the median. FSIS is 
continuing to analyze data on production volume and Listeria controls 
in the RTE meat and poultry products industry and is using the FSIS 
risk assessment model for L. monocytogenes to determine the likely risk 
reduction effects of the rule. Preliminary results indicate that the 
risk reductions being achieved are substantially greater than those 
estimated in the analysis of the interim rule.


FSIS is also analyzing the potential risk reductions that might be 
achieved by implementing the lethality and stabilization performance 
standards for products that would be subject to the proposed rule. The 
risk reductions to be achieved by the proposed rule and that are being 
achieved by the interim rule are intended to contribute to the Agency's 
public health protection effort.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            02/27/01                    66 FR 12590
NPRM Comment Period End         05/29/01
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    07/03/01                    66 FR 35112
NPRM Comment Period End         09/10/01
Interim Final Rule              06/06/03                    68 FR 34208
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   10/06/03
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          01/31/05
NPRM Comment Period 
    Reopened                    03/24/05                    70 FR 15017
NPRM Comment Period End         05/09/05
Affirmation of Interim 
    Final Rule                  03/00/11
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Dr. Daniel L. Engeljohn
Deputy Assistant Administrator, Office of Policy and Program 
Development
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 205-0495
Fax: 202 401-1760
Email: daniel.engeljohn@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AC46
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

22. NUTRITION LABELING OF SINGLE-INGREDIENT PRODUCTS AND GROUND OR 
CHOPPED MEAT AND POULTRY PRODUCTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 601 et seq; 21 USC 451 et seq


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 317; 9 CFR 381


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


FSIS has proposed to amend the Federal meat and poultry products 
inspection regulations to require nutrition labeling for the major cuts 
of single-ingredient, raw meat and poultry products, either on their 
label or at their point-of-purchase, unless an exemption applies. FSIS 
also proposed to require nutrition information on the label of ground 
or chopped meat and poultry products, unless an exemption applies. The 
requirements for ground or chopped products will be consistent with 
those for multi-ingredient products.


FSIS also proposed to amend the nutrition labeling regulations to 
provide that when a ground or chopped product does not meet the 
regulatory criteria to be labeled ``low fat,'' a lean percentage claim 
may be included on the label or in labeling, as long as a statement of 
the fat percentage also is displayed on the label or in labeling.


Statement of Need:


The Agency will require that nutrition information be provided for the 
major

[[Page 79491]]

cuts of single-ingredient, raw meat and poultry products, either on 
their label or at their point of purchase, because during the most 
recent surveys of retailer, the Agency did not find significant 
participation in the voluntary nutrition labeling program for single-
ingredient, raw meat and poultry products. Ground or chopped products 
are similar to multi-ingredient products. This rule is necessary so 
that consumers can have the information they need to construct healthy 
diets.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This action is authorized under the Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 
U.S.C. 601 to 695) and the Poultry Products Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 
451 to 470).


Alternatives:


No action; nutrition labels required on all single-ingredient, raw 
products (major cuts and non-major cuts) and all ground or chopped 
products; nutrition labels required on all major cuts of single-
ingredient, raw products (but not non-major cuts) and all ground or 
chopped products; nutrition information at the point of purchase 
required for all single-ingredient, raw products (major and non-major 
cuts) and for all ground or chopped products.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Cost will include the equipment for making labels, labor, and materials 
used for labels for ground or chopped products. The cost of providing 
nutrition labeling for the major cuts of single-ingredient, raw meat 
and poultry products should not be significant, because retail 
establishments would have the option of providing nutrition information 
through point-of-purchase materials.


Benefits of the nutrition labeling rule would result consumers modify 
their diets in response to new nutrition information concerning ground 
or chopped products and the major cuts of single-ingredient, raw 
products. Reductions in consumption of fat and cholesterol are 
associated with reduced incidence of cancer and coronary heart disease.


FSIS has concluded that the quantitative benefits will exceed the 
quantitative costs of the supplemental proposed rule. FSIS estimates 
that the annualized benefits of the proposed rule will range from 
approximately $185.6 to $230.8 million, using a 7 percent discount rate 
over 20 years. FSIS estimates that the annualized costs will range from 
approximately $26.7 to $44.8 million, using a 7 percent discount rate 
over 20 years.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/18/01                     66 FR 4970
NPRM Comment Period End         04/18/01
Extension of Comment 
    Period                      04/20/01                    66 FR 20213
NPRM Comment Period End         07/17/01
Supplemental Proposed 
    Rule                        12/18/09                    74 FR 67736
Supplemental Proposed 
    Rule Comment Period 
    End                         02/16/10
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Rosalyn Murphy-Jenkins
Director, Labeling and Program Delivery Division
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
5601 Sunnyside Avenue
Beltsville, MD 20705-5000
Phone: 301 504-0878
Fax: 301 504-0872
Email: rosalyn.murphy-jenkins@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AC60
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

23. NOTIFICATION, DOCUMENTATION, AND RECORDKEEPING REQUIREMENTS FOR 
INSPECTED ESTABLISHMENTS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


21 USC 612 to 613; 21 USC 459


CFR Citation:


9 CFR 417.4; 9 CFR 418


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has proposed to require 
establishments subject to inspection under the Federal Meat Inspection 
Act and the Poultry Products Inspection Act to promptly notify the 
Secretary of Agriculture that an adulterated or misbranded product 
received by or originating from the establishment has entered into 
commerce, if the establishment believes or has reason to believe that 
this has happened. FSIS has also proposed to require these 
establishments to: (1) Prepare and maintain current procedures for the 
recall of all products produced and shipped by the establishment and 
(2) document each reassessment of the process control plans of the 
establishment.


Statement of Need:


The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (Pub. L. 110-246, sec. 
11017), known as the 2008 Farm Bill, amended the Federal Meat 
Inspection Act (FMIA) and the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) to 
require establishments subject to inspection under these Acts to 
promptly notify the Secretary that an adulterated or misbranded product 
received by or originating from the establishment has entered into 
commerce, if the establishment believes or has reason to believe that 
this has happened. Section 11017 also requires establishments subject 
to inspection under the FMIA and PPIA to: (1) Prepare and maintain 
current procedures for the recall of all products produced and shipped 
by the establishment; and (2) document each reassessment of the process 
control plans of the establishment.


Summary of Legal Basis:


21 U.S.C. 612 and 613; 21 U.S.C. 459, and Public Law 110-246, sec. 
11017.


Alternatives:


The option of no rulemaking is unavailable.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Approximate costs: $5.0 million for labor and costs; $5.2 million for 
first year costs; $0.7 million average costs adjusted with a 3.0 
percent inflation rate for following years. Total approximate costs: 
$10.2 million. The average cost of this final rule to small entities is 
expected to be less than one tenth of one cent of meat and poultry food 
products per annum. Therefore, FSIS has determined that this rule will 
not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small 
entities.


Approximate benefits: Benefits have not been monetized because 
quantified data

[[Page 79492]]

on benefits attributable to this final rule are not available. Non-
monetary benefits include improved protection of the public health, 
improved HACCP plans, and improved recall effectiveness.


Risks:


In preparing regulations on the shipment of adulterated meat and 
poultry products by meat and poultry establishments, the preparation 
and maintenance of procedures for recalled products produced and 
shipped by establishments, and the documentation of each reassessment 
of the process control plans by the establishment, the Agency 
considered any risks to public health or other pertinent risks 
associated with these actions.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/25/10                    75 FR 14361
NPRM Comment Period End         05/24/10
Final Action                    09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Victoria Levine
Program Analyst, Policy Issuances Division
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-5627
Fax: 202 690-0486
Email: victoria.levine@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AD34
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--FSIS

<###DOC>

24. FEDERAL-STATE INTERSTATE SHIPMENT COOPERATIVE INSPECTION PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 110-246, sec 11015


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, December 18, 2009.


Abstract:


FSIS has proposed regulations to implement a new voluntary Federal-
State cooperative inspection program under which State-inspected 
establishments with 25 or fewer employees would be eligible to ship 
meat and poultry products in interstate commerce. State-inspected 
establishments selected to participate in this program would be 
required to comply with all Federal standards under the Federal Meat 
Inspection Act (FMIA) and the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA). 
These establishments would receive inspection services from State 
inspection personnel that have been trained and certified to assist 
with enforcement of the FMIA and PPIA. Meat and poultry products 
produced under the program that have been inspected and passed by 
selected State-inspection personnel would bear a Federal mark of 
inspection. FSIS is proposing these regulations in response to the 
Food, Conservation, and Energy Act, enacted on June 18, 2008 (the 2008 
Farm Bill). Section 11015 of 2008 Farm Bill provides for the interstate 
shipment of State-inspected meat and poultry product from selected 
establishments and requires that FSIS promulgate implementing 
regulations no later than 18 months from the date of its enactment.


Statement of Need:


This action is needed to implement a new Federal-State cooperative 
program that will permit certain State-inspected establishments to ship 
meat and poultry products in interstate commerce. Inspection services 
for establishments selected to participate in the program will be 
provided by State inspection personnel that have been trained and 
certified in the administration and enforcement of the Federal Meat 
Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) and the Poultry Products 
Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 U.S.C. 451 et seq.) Meat and poultry products 
produced by establishments selected to participate in the program will 
bear a Federal mark of inspection.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This action is authorized under section 11015 of the Food, 
Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 (the 2008 Farm Bill) (Pub. L. 110-
246). Section 11015 amends the Federal Meat Inspection Act (FMIA) (21 
U.S.C. 601 et seq.) and the Poultry Products Inspection Act (PPIA) (21 
U.S.C. 451 et seq.) to establish an optional Federal-State cooperative 
program under which State-inspected establishments would be permitted 
to ship meat and poultry products in interstate commerce. The law 
requires that FSIS promulgate implementing regulations no later than 18 
months after the date of enactment.


Alternatives:


1. No action: FSIS did not consider the alternative of no action 
because section 11015 of the 2008 Farm Bill requires that it promulgate 
regulations to implement the new Federal-State cooperative program. The 
Agency did consider alternatives on how to implement the new program.


2. Limit participation in the program to State-inspected establishments 
with 25 or fewer employees on average: Under the law, State-inspected 
establishments that have 25 or fewer employees on average are permitted 
to participate in the program. The law also provides that FSIS may 
select establishments that employ more than 25 but fewer than 35 
employees on average as of June 18, 2008 (the date of enactment), to 
participate in the program. Under the law, if these establishments 
employ more than 25 employees on average 3 years after FSIS promulgates 
implementing regulations, they are required to transition to a Federal 
establishment. FSIS rejected the option of limiting the program to 
establishment that employ 25 or fewer employees on average to give 
additional small establishments the opportunity to participate in the 
program and ship their meat and poultry products in interstate 
commerce.


3. Permit establishments with 25 to 35 employees on average as of June 
18, 2008, to participate in the program. FSIS chose the option of 
permitting these establishments to be selected to participate in the 
program to give additional small establishments the opportunity to ship 
their meat and poultry products in interstate commerce. Under this 
option, FSIS will develop a procedure to transition any establishment 
that employs more than 25 people on average to a Federal establishment. 
Establishments that employee 24 to 35 employees on average as of June 
18, 2008, would be subject to the transition procedure beginning on the 
date 3 years after the Agency promulgates implementing regulations.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FSIS is analyzing the costs of this proposed rule to industry, FSIS, 
State and local governments, small entities, and foreign countries. 
Participation in

[[Page 79493]]

the new Federal-State cooperative program will be optional. Thus, the 
costs and benefits associated with the proposed rule will depend on the 
number of States and establishments that choose to participate. Very 
small and certain small establishments State-inspected establishments 
that are selected to participate in the program are likely to benefit 
from the program because they will be permitted sell their products to 
consumers in other States and foreign countries.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/16/09                    74 FR 47648
NPRM Comment Period End         12/16/09
Final Action                    05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, State


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
Rachel Edelstein
Director, Policy Issuances Division
Department of Agriculture
Food Safety and Inspection Service
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 720-0399
Fax: 202 690-0486
Email: rachel.edelstein@fsis.usda.gov
RIN: 0583-AD37
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBS)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

25.  VALUE-ADDED PRODUCER GRANT PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 110-246


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 1951, subpart E; 7 CFR 4284, subpart J


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Agency proposes to modify 7 CFR part 4284, subpart J, to include 
the definitions for mid-tier value chain and value-added agricultural 
product to include an agricultural commodity or product that is 
aggregated and marketed as a locally produced agricultural food 
product. Additionally, the proposed rule will expand the grant term not 
to exceed 3 years; implement a simplified application process for 
project proposals less than $50,000; provide for priority to projects 
that increase opportunities for beginning farmers or ranchers, socially 
disadvantaged farmers or ranchers, and operators of small- and medium 
sized farms and ranches that are structured as a family farm; and 
implement a reservation of funds for projects to benefit beginning 
farmers or ranchers, socially disadvantaged farmers or ranchers, and 
mid-tier value chains.


The Agency is also proposing to amend 7 CFR part 1951, subpart E, to 
allow the delegation of the servicing of the program to USDA State 
Office personnel.


Statement of Need:


The modifications to the Value Added Producer Grant program will 
streamline program regulations resulting in better quality 
applications. It is expected that all of the changes will result in 
time and resource savings to the applicant and the Agency. Publication 
of the final rule is crucial to program implementation. The program 
will directly create new businesses, assist with the expansion of 
existing businesses, create jobs, increase the flow of tax dollars to 
rural communities, and add lasting value in terms of rural community 
impact.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The program was authorized by the Agriculture Risk Protection Act of 
2000, section 231 (Pub. L. 106-224). The purpose of the Value Added 
Producer Grant (VAPG) program is to help eligible independent producers 
of agricultural commodities, agricultural producer groups, farmer and 
rancher cooperatives, and majority-owned, producer-based business 
ventures develop business plans for viable marketing opportunities and 
develop strategies to create marketing opportunities.


Alternatives:


An alternative is to continue under the interim rule. The interim rule 
is scheduled to be published and remain in effect until a final rule is 
adopted. A notice announcing FY 2010 funding will be published after 
the interim rule. FY 2010 funding will be expendable in FY 2011.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Costs:


The anticipated costs associated with this process are contract 
services. An exact dollar amount cannot be determined at this time, but 
it will not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or 
more.


No change in FTE needs is anticipated.


Minimal automation changes are anticipated.


Benefits:


The intended action is to fine tune the program regulations, making 
them easier to use for the public and Agency staff, while incorporate 
changes designed to reduce the cost to the Government and the subsidy 
rate.


Risks:


Program risks include risk of loss in the loans guaranteed under this 
program. We anticipate mitigating these risks with improved regulatory 
and administrative guidance and appropriate training.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/28/10                    75 FR 29920
NPRM Comment Period End         06/28/10
Interim Final Rule              12/00/10
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   01/00/11
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None

[[Page 79494]]

Agency Contact:
Jermolowicz Andrew
Assistant Deputy Administrator
Department of Agriculture
Rural Business-Cooperative Service
STOP 3250
1400 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20250-3250
Phone: 202 720-8460
Fax: 202 720-4641
Email: andrew.jermolowicz@wdc.usda.gov
RIN: 0570-AA79
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

USDA--Rural Utilities Service (RUS)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

26. RURAL BROADBAND ACCESS LOANS AND LOAN GUARANTEES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 107-171; 7 USC 901 et seq


CFR Citation:


7 CFR 1738


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


On February 17, 2009, President Obama signed the American Recovery and 
Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) into law. The essential goal of 
the Recovery Act is to provide a ``direct fiscal boost to help lift our 
Nation from the greatest economic crisis in our lifetimes and lay the 
foundation for future growth.'' The Recovery Act expanded Rural 
Utilities Service's (RUS') existing authority to make loans and 
provides new authority to make grants to facilitate broadband 
deployment in rural areas. RUS has been tasked with the time-sensitive 
priority of developing the regulation for this new authority. The 
Agency will, however, also continue to develop a final rule for the 
Broadband Program as authorized by The Farm Security and Rural 
Investment Act of 2002, Public Law 107-171 (2002 Farm Bill).


There has been more than $1.7 billion in loans for broadband deployment 
with more than 1,900 rural communities that will receive broadband 
services. Even with this level of success, the program needs to be 
adjusted to better serve unserved or underserved communities. In 
response, the RUS, an agency of the United States Department of 
Agriculture, revised the broadband rule to address this and other 
critical issues, and further facilitate the deployment of broadband 
service in rural America as directed by Congress by: (1) Clearly 
defining served and underserved markets based on service availability 
and existing competitors and target unserved in underserved areas; (2) 
providing potential applicants with a clear definition of which 
communities are eligible for funding; (3) establishing a minimum data 
transmission rate that the facilities financed must be able to deliver 
to the consumer; (4) establishing equity requirements that mitigate 
risks; (5) modifying market survey requirements based on service 
territories and existing availability of service; and (6) imposing new 
time limits for build-out and deployment to ensure prudent use of loan 
funds and timely delivery services to rural customers. A proposed rule 
was published in May 2007 seeking comments from interested parties. 
Subsequently, the rulemaking process was suspended in light of new 
statutory requirements provided in the 2008 Farm Bill, thus requiring 
further rulemaking activities.


Statement of Need:


Since the Broadband Loan Program's inception, the Agency has faced and 
continues to face significant challenges in administering the program, 
including the fierce competitive nature of the broadband market, the 
fact that many companies proposing to offer broadband service are 
start-up organizations with limited resources, continually evolving 
technology, and economic factors such as the higher cost of serving 
rural communities. Because of these challenges, the Agency has been 
reviewing the characteristics of the Broadband Loan Program and has 
determined that modifications are required to accelerate the deployment 
of broadband service to the rural areas of the country.


The Broadband Loan Program is important to the revitalization of our 
rural communities and their economies. A lack of private capital has 
been cited as a reason for slow broadband deployment. However, an 
adequate supply of investment capital alone may not be sufficient to 
universally deploy broadband facilities in rural America--primarily due 
to the high cost of deployment outside of more densely populated areas. 
Due to market uncertainties and risks associated with startup ventures, 
non-Federal sources of funding are restricting and raising the cost of 
capital, particularly in costly rural markets. Better access to low-
cost capital is a primary initiative of this program in facilitating an 
increase in the rate of rural broadband deployment.


Summary of Legal Basis:


On May 13, 2002, the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, 
Public Law 107-171 (``2002 Farm Bill''), was signed into law. Title VI 
of the Farm Bill authorized the Agency to approve loans and loan 
guarantees for the costs of construction, improvement, and acquisition 
of facilities and equipment for broadband service in eligible rural 
communities. On June 18, 2008, the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act 
of 2008 (``2008 Farm Bill'') became law, significantly changing the 
statutory requirements of the Broadband Loan Program. As such, the 
Agency will be issuing a Interim Rule that implements the statutory 
changes and requests comment on sections of the rule that were not part 
of the Proposed Rule published in May 2007.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The program costs associated with lending activity are relatively low. 
The average subsidy rate since the program's inception is 2.4 percent, 
or $24,000 in appropriated budget authority for every $1 million in 
loans. The residents and businesses of rural communities are the 
beneficiaries. Rural Development is responsible for helping rural 
America transition from an agricultural base economy to a platform for 
new business and economic opportunity. Rural Development seeks to 
leverage its financial resources with private investment to facilitate 
the development of the changing rural economy. The Broadband Loan 
Program provides rural America with the platform on which to achieve 
these goals. With access to the same advanced telecommunications 
networks as its urban counterparts, especially broadband networks 
designed to accommodate distance learning, telework, and telemedicine, 
rural America will eventually see improving educational opportunities, 
health care, economies, safety and security, and ultimately higher 
employment. The Agency shares the assessment of Congress, State and 
local officials, industry representatives, and rural residents that 
broadband service is a critical component to the future of rural 
America. The Agency is committed to ensuring that rural America will 
have access to affordable, reliable, broadband

[[Page 79495]]

services, and to provide a healthy, safe and prosperous place to live 
and work.


Risks:


Building broadband infrastructure in sparsely populated rural 
communities is very capital intensive. The Broadband Loan Program 
continues to face risk factors that pose challenges in ensuring that 
proposed projects can and do deliver robust, affordable broadband 
services to rural consumers. These factors include the competitive 
nature of the broadband market, the fact that many companies proposing 
to offer broadband service are start-up organizations with limited 
resources, rapidly evolving technology, and economic factors such as 
the higher cost of serving rural communities. While many of the 
smallest rural communities understand the importance of broadband 
infrastructure to their economic development, they often have 
difficulty attracting service providers to their communities.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/11/07                    72 FR 26742
NPRM Comment Period End         07/10/07
Interim Final Rule              12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Michele L. Brooks
Director, Program Development and Regulatory Analysis
Department of Agriculture
Rural Utilities Service
Room 5159 South Building
STOP 1522
1400 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20250
Phone: 202 690-1078
Fax: 202 720-8435
Email: michele.brooks@usda.gov
RIN: 0572-AC06
BILLING CODE 3410-90-S

[[Page 79496]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE (DOC)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory and Deregulatory Priorities
The President's fiscal year (FY) 2010 Budget details how this 
Administration plans to lift our economy out of recession and lay a new 
foundation for long-term growth and prosperity. The Department of 
Commerce (the ``Department'' or ``Commerce'') is aligning itself to 
contribute to both of these goals.
Established in 1903, the Department of Commerce is one of the oldest 
Cabinet-level agencies in the Federal Government. The Department's 
mission is to create the conditions for economic growth and opportunity 
by promoting innovation, entrepreneurship, competitiveness, and 
environmental stewardship. Commerce has 12 operating units, which are 
responsible for managing a diverse portfolio of programs and services, 
ranging from trade promotion and economic development assistance to 
broadband and the National Weather Service. The Department currently 
employs approximately 53,000 people around the world, although this 
workforce doubled temporarily in 2010, due to the decennial census.
The Department touches Americans daily, in many ways--making possible 
the daily weather reports and survey research; facilitating technology 
that all of us use in the workplace and in the home each day; 
supporting the development, gathering, and transmission of information 
essential to competitive business; enabling the diversity of companies 
and goods found in America's and the world's marketplace; and 
supporting environmental and economic health for the communities in 
which Americans live.
Commerce has a clear and compelling vision for itself, for its role in 
the Federal Government, and for its roles supporting the American 
people, now and in the future. To achieve this vision, the Department 
works in partnership with businesses, universities, communities, and 
workers to:
 Innovate by creating new ideas through cutting-edge science 
            and technology from advances in nanotechnology, to ocean 
            exploration, to broadband deployment, and by protecting 
            American innovations through the patent and trademark 
            system;
 Support entrepreneurship and commercialization by enabling 
            community development and strengthening minority businesses 
            and small manufacturers;
 Maintain U.S. economic competitiveness in the global 
            marketplace by promoting exports, ensuring a level playing 
            field for U.S. businesses, and ensuring that technology 
            transfer is consistent with our Nation's economic and 
            security interests;
 Provide effective management and stewardship of our Nation's 
            resources and assets to ensure sustainable economic 
            opportunities; and
 Make informed policy decisions and enable better understanding 
            of the economy by providing accurate economic and 
            demographic data.
The Department is a vital resource base, a tireless advocate, and 
Cabinet-level voice for job creation.
The Regulatory Plan tracks the most important regulations that 
implement these policy and program priorities, several of which involve 
regulation of the private sector by the Department.
Responding to the Administration's Regulatory Philosophy and Principles
The vast majority of the Department's programs and activities do not 
involve regulation. Of the Department's 12 primary operating units, 
only the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) will be 
planning actions that are considered the ``most important'' significant 
preregulatory or regulatory actions for FY 2010. During the next year, 
NOAA plans to publish four rulemaking actions that are designated as 
Regulatory Plan actions. Further information on these actions is 
provided below.
The Department has a long-standing policy to prohibit the issuance of 
any regulation that discriminates on the basis of race, religion, 
gender, or any other suspect category and requires that all regulations 
be written so as to be understandable to those affected by them. The 
Secretary also requires that the Department afford the public the 
maximum possible opportunity to participate in departmental 
rulemakings, even where public participation is not required by law.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
NOAA establishes and administers Federal policy for the conservation 
and management of the Nation's oceanic, coastal, and atmospheric 
resources. It provides a variety of essential environmental and climate 
services vital to public safety and to the Nation's economy, such as 
weather forecasts, drought forecasts, and storm warnings. It is a 
source of objective information on the state of the environment. NOAA 
plays the lead role in achieving the departmental goal of promoting 
stewardship by providing assessments of the global environment.
Recognizing that economic growth must go hand-in-hand with 
environmental stewardship, the Department, through NOAA, conducts 
programs designed to provide a better understanding of the connections 
between environmental health, economics, and national security. 
Commerce's emphasis on ``sustainable fisheries'' is designed to boost 
long-term economic growth in a vital sector of the U.S. economy while 
conserving the resources in the public trust and minimizing any 
economic dislocation necessary to ensure long-term economic growth. The 
Department is where business and environmental interests intersect, and 
the classic debate on the use of natural resources is transformed into 
a ``win-win'' situation for the environment and the economy.
Three of NOAA's major components, the National Marine Fisheries 
Services (NMFS), the National Ocean Service (NOS), and the National 
Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS), 
exercise regulatory authority.
NMFS oversees the management and conservation of the Nation's marine 
fisheries, protects threatened and endangered marine and anadromous 
species and marine mammals, and promotes economic development of the 
U.S. fishing industry. NOS assists the coastal States in their 
management of land and ocean resources in their coastal zones, 
including estuarine research reserves; manages the Nation's national 
marine sanctuaries; monitors marine pollution; and directs the national 
program for deep-seabed minerals and ocean thermal energy. NESDIS 
administers the civilian weather satellite program and licenses private 
organizations to operate commercial land-remote sensing satellite 
systems.
The Department, through NOAA, has a unique role in promoting 
stewardship of the global environment through effective management of 
the Nation's marine and coastal resources and in monitoring and 
predicting changes in the Earth's environment, thus linking trade, 
development, and technology with environmental issues. NOAA has the 
primary Federal responsibility for providing sound scientific 
observations,

[[Page 79497]]

assessments, and forecasts of environmental phenomena on which resource 
management, adaptation, and other societal decisions can be made.
In the environmental stewardship area, NOAA's goals include: Rebuilding 
and maintaining strong U.S. fisheries by using market-based tools and 
ecosystem approaches to management; increasing the populations of 
depleted, threatened, or endangered species and marine mammals by 
implementing recovery plans that provide for their recovery while still 
allowing for economic and recreational opportunities; promoting healthy 
coastal ecosystems by ensuring that economic development is managed in 
ways that maintain biodiversity and long-term productivity for 
sustained use; and modernizing navigation and positioning services. In 
the environmental assessment and prediction area, goals include: 
Understanding climate change science and impacts, and communicating 
that understanding to government and private sector stakeholders 
enabling them to adapt; continually improving the National Weather 
Service; implementing reliable seasonal and interannual climate 
forecasts to guide economic planning; providing science-based policy 
advice on options to deal with very long-term (decadal to centennial) 
changes in the environment; and advancing and improving short-term 
warning and forecast services for the entire environment.
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (Magnuson-
Stevens Act) rulemakings concern the conservation and management of 
fishery resources in the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone (generally 3-200 
nautical miles). Among the several hundred rulemakings that NOAA plans 
to issue in fiscal year 2010, a number of the preregulatory and 
regulatory actions will be significant. The exact number of such 
rulemakings is unknown, since they are usually initiated by the actions 
of eight regional Fishery Management Councils (FMCs) that are 
responsible for preparing fishery management plans (FMPs) and FMP 
amendments, and for drafting implementing regulations for each managed 
fishery. NOAA issues regulations to implement FMPs and FMP amendments. 
Once a rulemaking is triggered by an FMC, the Magnuson-Stevens Act 
places stringent deadlines upon NOAA by which it must exercise its 
rulemaking responsibilities. FMPs and FMP amendments for Atlantic 
highly migratory species, such as bluefin tuna, swordfish, and sharks, 
are developed directly by NOAA, not by FMCs.
FMPs address a variety of issues including maximizing fishing 
opportunities on healthy stocks, rebuilding overfished stocks, and 
addressing gear conflicts. One of the problems that FMPs may address is 
preventing overcapitalization (preventing excess fishing capacity) of 
fisheries. This may be resolved by market-based systems such as catch 
shares, which permit shareholders to harvest a quantity of fish and 
which can be traded on the open market. Harvest limits based on the 
best available scientific information, whether as a total fishing limit 
for a species in a fishery or as a share assigned to each vessel 
participant, enable stressed stocks to rebuild. Other measures include 
staggering fishing seasons or limiting gear types to avoid gear 
conflicts on the fishing grounds and establishing seasonal and area 
closures to protect fishery stocks.
The FMCs provide a forum for public debate and, using the best 
scientific information available, make the judgments needed to 
determine optimum yield on a fishery-by-fishery basis. Optional 
management measures are examined and selected in accordance with the 
national standards set forth in the Magnuson-Stevens Act. This process, 
including the selection of the preferred management measures, 
constitutes the development, in simplified form, of an FMP. The FMP, 
together with draft implementing regulations and supporting 
documentation, is submitted to NMFS for review against the national 
standards set forth in the Magnuson-Stevens Act, in other provisions of 
the Act, and other applicable laws. The same process applies to 
amending an existing approved FMP.
Marine Mammal Protection Act
The Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 (MMPA) provides the authority 
for the conservation and management of marine mammals under U.S. 
jurisdiction. It expressly prohibits, with certain exceptions, the take 
of marine mammals. Exceptions allow for permitting the collection of 
wild animals for scientific research or public display or to enhance 
the survival of a species or stock. NMFS initiates rulemakings under 
the MMPA to establish a management regime to reduce marine mammal 
mortalities and injuries as a result of interactions with fisheries. 
The Act also established the Marine Mammal Commission, which makes 
recommendations to the Secretaries of the Departments of Commerce and 
the Interior and other Federal officials on protecting and conserving 
marine mammals. The Act underwent significant changes in 1994 to allow 
for takings incidental to commercial fishing operations, to provide 
certain exemptions for subsistence and scientific uses, and to require 
the preparation of stock assessments for all marine mammal stocks in 
waters under U.S. jurisdiction.
Endangered Species Act
The Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA) provides for the conservation 
of species that are determined to be ``endangered'' or ``threatened,'' 
and the conservation of the ecosystems on which these species depend. 
The ESA authorizes both NMFS and the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to 
jointly administer the provisions of the Act. NMFS manages marine and 
``anadromous'' species, and FWS manages land and freshwater species. 
Together, NMFS and FWS work to protect critically imperiled species 
from extinction. Of the 1,310 listed species found in part or entirely 
in the United States and its waters, NMFS has jurisdiction over 
approximately 60 species. NMFS' rulemaking actions are focused on 
determining whether any species under its responsibility is an 
endangered or threatened species and whether those species must be 
added to the list of protected species. NMFS is also responsible for 
designating, reviewing, and revising critical habitat for any listed 
species. In addition, under the ESA's procedural framework, Federal 
agencies consult with NMFS on any proposed action authorized, funded, 
or carried out by that agency that may affect one of the listed species 
or designated critical habitat, or is likely to jeopardize proposed 
species or adversely modify proposed critical habitat that is under 
NMFS' jurisdiction.
NOAA's Regulatory Plan Actions
While most of the rulemakings undertaken by NOAA do not rise to the 
level necessary to be included in the Department's regulatory plan, 
NMFS is undertaking four actions that rise to the level of ``most 
important'' of the Department's significant regulatory actions and thus 
are included in this year's regulatory plan. The four actions implement 
provisions of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management 
Act, as reauthorized in 2006. The first action may be of

[[Page 79498]]

particular interest to international trading partners as it concerns 
the Certification of Nations Whose Fishing Vessels are Engaged in 
Illegal, Unreported, or Unregulated Fishing or Bycatch of Protected 
Living Marine Resources. A description of the four regulatory plan 
actions is provided below.
1. Certification of Nations Whose Fishing Vessels Are Engaged in 
            Illegal, Unreported, or Unregulated Fishing or Bycatch of 
            Protected Living Marine Resources (0648-AV51). NOAA's NMFS 
            is establishing a process of identification and 
            certification to address illegal, unreported, or 
            unregulated (IUU) activities and bycatch of protected 
            species in international fisheries. Nations whose fishing 
            vessels engage, or have been engaged, in IUU fishing would 
            be identified in a biennial report to Congress, as required 
            under section 403 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery 
            Conservation and Management Act. NMFS would subsequently 
            certify whether identified nations have taken appropriate 
            corrective action with respect to the activities of its 
            fishing vessels.
2. Pacific Coast Groundfish Trawl Rationalization Program--Program 
            Components Rulemaking (0648-AY68): Due to the complexity of 
            the fishery management measures, NMFS is implementing the 
            Pacific Coast Groundfish Trawl Rationalization Program 
            through multiple rulemakings. A previous rulemaking (i.e., 
            the Initial Issuance rule) creates and issues quota shares 
            to qualified participants and establishes an appeals 
            process. The program components rulemaking would implement 
            the second phase of the trawl rationalization program. In 
            particular, this rulemaking includes requirements for 
            observers and compliance monitors, retention requirements, 
            coop permits and agreements, first receiver site licenses, 
            vessel accounts and mandatory economic data collection.
3. Designation of Critical Habitat for Cook Inlet Beluga Whale (0648-
            AX50): This rule would designate critical habitat in two 
            areas of Cook Inlet totaling 3,016 square miles. Critical 
            habitat would include intertidal and subtidal waters near 
            high and medium flow anadromous fish streams. The deadline 
            for publication is October 20, 2010.
4. Critical Habitat for North Atlantic Right Whales (0648-AY54): 
            Northern right whales have been listed as endangered since 
            1973. In 2008, NOAA removed Northern right whales from the 
            list of endangered species and replaced it with two 
            separate species (North Pacific and North Atlantic right 
            whales). NOAA had designated critical habitat for Northern 
            right whales but has not yet designated critical habitat 
            for the new North Atlantic right whale species. Several 
            environmental groups threaten litigation over the failure 
            to designate critical habitat for the species listed in 
            2008. NOAA is discussing a possible schedule for critical 
            habitat designation that would avoid litigation.
At this time, NOAA is unable to determine the aggregate cost of the 
identified Regulatory Plan actions as several of these actions are 
currently under development.
Bureau of Industry and Security
The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) advances U.S. national 
security, foreign policy, and economic objectives by maintaining and 
strengthening an adaptable, efficient, and effective export control and 
treaty compliance systems. BIS also administers programs to prioritize 
certain contracts to promote the national defense and to protect and 
enhance the defense industrial base.
In August 2009, the President directed a broad-based interagency review 
of the U.S. export control system with the goal of strengthening 
national security and the competitiveness of key U.S. manufacturing and 
technology sectors by focusing on the current threats and adapting to 
the changing economic and technological landscape. In August 2010, the 
President outlined an approach under which agencies that administer 
export controls will apply new criteria for determining what items need 
to be controlled and a common set of policies for determining when an 
export license is required. The control list criteria are to be based 
on transparent rules, which will reduce the uncertainty faced by our 
Allies, U.S. industry, and its foreign partners, and will allow the 
government to erect higher walls around the most sensitive items in 
order to enhance national security.
Under the President's approach, agencies will apply the criteria and 
revise the lists of munitions and dual use items that are controlled 
for export so that they:
 Are ``tiered'' to distinguish the types of items that should 
            be subject to stricter or more permissive levels of control 
            for different destinations, end-uses, and end-users;
 Create a ``bright line'' between the two current control lists 
            to clarify jurisdictional determinations and reduce 
            government and industry uncertainty about whether 
            particular items are subject to the control of the State 
            Department or the Commerce Department; and
 Are structurally aligned so that they potentially can be 
            combined into a single list of controlled items.
BIS' current regulatory plan action is designed to implement the 
initial phase of the President's directive.
Major Programs and Activities
BIS administers four sets of regulations. The Export Administration 
Regulations (EAR) regulate exports and reexports to protect national 
security, foreign policy, and short supply interests. The EAR also 
regulate participation of U.S. persons in certain boycotts administered 
by foreign governments. The National Defense Industrial Base 
Regulations provide for prioritization of certain contracts and 
allocations of resources to promote the national defense, require 
reporting of foreign government imposed offsets in defense sales, and 
address the effect of imports on the defense industrial base. The 
Chemical Weapons Convention Regulations implement declaration, 
reporting, and on-site inspection requirements in the private sector 
necessary to meet United States treaty obligations under Chemical 
Weapons Convention treaty. The Additional Protocol Regulations 
implement similar requirements with respect to an agreement between the 
United States and the International Atomic Energy Agency.
BIS also has an enforcement component with eight field offices in the 
United States. BIS export control officers are stationed at several 
U.S. embassies and consulates abroad. BIS works with other U.S. 
Government agencies to promote coordinated U.S. Government efforts in 
export controls and other programs. BIS participates in U.S. Government 
efforts to strengthen multilateral export control regimes and to 
promote effective export controls through cooperation with other 
governments.
BIS' Regulatory Plan Actions
As the agency responsible for leading administration and enforcement of 
the

[[Page 79499]]

U.S. dual-use export control system, BIS is playing a central role in 
the Administration's efforts to fundamentally reform the export control 
system. Changing what we control, how we control it and how we enforce 
and manage our controls will help strengthen our national security by 
focusing our efforts on controlling the most critical products and 
technologies and by enhancing the competitiveness of key U.S. 
manufacturing and technology sectors. In accordance with the 
President's directive to develop a system that is tiered to distinguish 
the types of items that should be subject to stricter or more 
permissive levels of control for different destinations, end-uses, and 
end-users, BIS is developing a rule to implement an Export Control Tier 
Based License Exception. This rule would allow certain dual-use items 
to be exported and reexported with conditions to specific countries 
without a license that would otherwise be required.
BIS will also be developing other rules to implement additional aspects 
of the export control reform as those aspects are identified and 
decided.
International Trade Administration
The International Trade Administration (ITA) assists in the development 
of U.S. trade policy in the global economy; creates jobs and economic 
growth by promoting U.S. companies; strengthens American 
competitiveness across all industries; addresses market access and 
compliance issues; administers U.S. trade laws; and undertakes a range 
of trade promotion and trade advocacy efforts.
Import Administration
The Import Administration (IA) is the ITA's lead unit on enforcing 
trade laws and agreements to prevent unfairly traded imports and to 
safeguard jobs and the competitive strength of American industry. From 
working to resolve disputes to implementing measures when violations 
are found, we are there to protect U.S. companies from unfair trade 
practices.
The primary role of IA is to enforce effectively the U.S. unfair trade 
laws (i.e., the antidumping duty (AD) and countervailing duty (CVD) 
laws) and to develop and implement other policies and programs aimed at 
countering foreign unfair trade practices. IA also administers the 
Foreign Trade Zones program, the Statutory Import Program and certain 
sector-specific agreements and programs, such as the Textiles and 
Apparel Program and the Steel Import Monitoring and Analysis licensing 
system.
AD proceedings focus on whether foreign producers/exporters are selling 
their merchandise in the United States at less than fair value. CVD 
proceedings focus on whether foreign producers/exporters are 
benefitting from subsidies provided by their governments. Parties who 
participate in AD/CVD proceedings include U.S. manufacturers, U.S. 
importers, and foreign exporters and manufacturers, some of whom are 
affiliated with U.S. companies.
ITA's Regulatory Plan Actions
IA is developing a rule entitled, ``Antidumping and Countervailing Duty 
Proceedings: Electronic Filing Procedures; Administrative Protective 
Order Procedures'' to implement an electronic filing and records 
management system called IA's Antidumping and Countervailing Duty 
Centralized Electronic Service System (IA ACCESS). The Department's 
regulations currently require parties to submit multiple copies of a 
public document, and additional copies if the document contains 
business proprietary information. Alternatively, under the current 
regulations, if a document contains business proprietary information, a 
party must submit one hard copy original and five hard copies of a 
business proprietary document and three copies of a public version. The 
proposed rule will require interested parties to use IA ACCESS to file 
submissions electronically, unless an exception for manual, hard copy 
filing is applicable. If a document must be filed manually, the 
proposed rule also reduces the required number of copies for manual 
submissions such that only one paper copy of the submission will need 
to be filed with the Department.
In addition to electronic filing, the goal of the IA ACCESS system is 
to expand the public's access to information in AD/CVD proceedings by 
making all publicly filed documents available on the internet. It will 
also allow interested parties to file all submissions (both public and 
business proprietary) with the Department using an internet connection. 
The Department envisions that such a system will create efficiencies in 
both the process and costs associated with filing and maintaining the 
documents. The ease of document submission will increase accessibility 
of submission to the Department by interested parties located within 
and outside the Washington, DC area.
Foreign-Trade Zones Board
The Foreign-Trade Zones (FTZ) Board is an interagency board composed of 
the Secretary of Commerce and the Secretary of the Treasury. The 
Secretary of Commerce is the chairman of the Board. The FTZ Board 
administers the Foreign-Trade Zones Act of 1934, as amended (19 U.S.C. 
section 81a et seq.) (FTZ Act).
Major Program and Activities
The FTZ Board administers the FTZ program of the United States, 
pursuant to the FTZ Act and the FTZ regulations, codified at 15 CFR 
part 400. FTZs are restricted-access sites in or near U.S. Customs and 
Border Protection (CBP) ports of entry licensed by the FTZ Board and 
operated under the supervision of CBP. FTZs are locations into which 
foreign and domestic merchandise may be moved for operations involving 
storage, exhibition, assembly, manufacture, or other processing not 
prohibited by law. FTZs are considered outside of U.S. customs 
territory, which means that the usual customs entry procedures and 
payment of duties are not required on foreign merchandise admitted into 
an FTZ unless and until that merchandise enters U.S. customs territory 
for domestic consumption.
The fact that FTZs are considered outside of U.S. customs territory 
makes them a valuable resource for many businesses. An FTZ user can 
avoid payment of U.S. customs duties on foreign merchandise admitted 
into an FTZ and then re-exported after further processing or 
manufacturing. Further, in some circumstances an FTZ user can admit 
foreign merchandise into an FTZ for use in manufacturing, and then, 
upon entry of the manufactured product into the U.S. customs territory, 
pay customs duties at the rate for the manufactured product. This can 
result in significant duty savings. Therefore, the FTZ program 
encourages retention of employment in the United States and promotion 
of export activity.
The FTZ Board reviews and approves applications for authority to 
establish FTZs and to conduct certain activity within FTZs. It has the 
authority to restrict or prohibit activity in FTZs. Under the FTZ Act, 
FTZs must be operated under public utility principles and provide 
uniform treatment to all that apply to use the FTZ. The FTZ Board 
ensures that FTZs are operated in the public interest.

[[Page 79500]]

The FTZ Board's Regulatory Plan Actions
The FTZ Board is in the process of revising its regulations, which have 
been in effect since 1990, in a proposed rule entitled, ``Foreign-Trade 
Zones in the United States.'' The new proposed rule was sent to OMB for 
review on August 31, 2010 (RIN 0625-AA81). The proposed rule will 
streamline application procedures and improve access to FTZs. For 
example, the FTZ Board is proposing to eliminate the need for advance 
Board approval of many types of manufacturing operations. This will 
allow businesses, including small businesses, to take advantage of 
manufacturing opportunities in FTZs more quickly and more in keeping 
with the pace of modern business, because they will not need to wait 
through the sometimes lengthy application process. Further, the 
proposed rule will provide guidance on the FTZ Act's requirements that 
FTZs be operated as public utilities with uniform access to all users. 
This aspect of the proposed rule will improve access to the job-
retention and export-promotion benefits of FTZs. The proposed rule also 
will provide greater clarity on various other aspects of the FTZ 
program, such as the FTZ Board's statutory fining authority.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOC--National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

27. DESIGNATION OF CRITICAL HABITAT FOR THE NORTH ATLANTIC RIGHT WHALE

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


16 USC 1361 et seq; 16 USC 1531 to 1543


CFR Citation:


50 CFR 226; 50 CFR 229


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


In June 1970, the Northern right whale was listed as endangered under 
the Endangered Species Conservation Act, the precursor to the 
Endangered Species Act (ESA)(35 FR 8495; codified at 50 CFR 17.11). 
Subsequently, right whales were listed as endangered under the ESA in 
1973, and as depleted under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) the 
same year. In 1994, NMFS designated critical habitat for the Northern 
right whale, a single species thought at the time to include right 
whales in both the North Atlantic and the North Pacific.


In 2006, NMFS published a comprehensive right whale status review that 
concluded that recent genetic data provided unequivocal support to 
distinguish three right whale lineages (including the southern right 
whale) as separate phylogenetic species (Rosenbaum et al. 2000). 
Rosenbaum et al. (2000) concluded that the right whale should be 
regarded as the following three separate species: (1) The North 
Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) ranging in the North 
Atlantic Ocean; (2) the North Pacific right whale (Eubalaena japonica), 
ranging in the North Pacific Ocean; and (3) the southern right whale 
(Eubalaena australis), historically ranging throughout the southern 
hemisphere's oceans.


Based on these findings, NMFS published a proposed and final 
determination listing right whales in the North Atlantic and North 
Pacific as separate endangered species under the ESA (71 FR 77704, 
December 27, 2006; 73 FR 12024, March 6, 2008). Based on the new 
listing determination, NMFS is required by the ESA to designate 
critical habitat separately for both the North Atlantic right whale and 
the North Pacific right whale.


In April 2008, a final critical habitat determination was published for 
the North Pacific right whale (73 FR 19000; April 8, 2008). At this 
time, NMFS is preparing a proposal to designate critical habitat for 
the North Atlantic right whale.


Statement of Need:


In June 1970, the Northern right whale was listed as endangered under 
the Endangered Species Conservation Act, the precursor to the 
Endangered Species Act (ESA)(35 FR 8495; codified at 50 CFR 17.11). 
Subsequently, right whales were listed as endangered under the ESA in 
1973 and as depleted under the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) the 
same year. In 1994, NMFS designated critical habitat for the Northern 
right whale, a single species thought at the time to include right 
whales in both the North Atlantic and the North Pacific.


In 2006, NMFS published a comprehensive right whale status review that 
concluded that recent genetic data provided unequivocal support to 
distinguish three right whale lineages (including the southern right 
whale) as separate phylogenetic species (Rosenbaum et al. 2000). 
Rosenbaum et al. (2000) concluded that the right whale should be 
regarded as the following three separate species: (1) The North 
Atlantic right whale (Eubalaena glacialis) ranging in the North 
Atlantic Ocean; (2) the North Pacific right whale (Eubalaena japonica), 
ranging in the North Pacific Ocean; and (3) the southern right whale 
(Eubalaena australis), historically ranging throughout the southern 
hemisphere's oceans.


Based on these findings, NMFS published a proposed and final 
determination listing right whales in the North Atlantic and North 
Pacific as separate endangered species under the ESA (71 FR 77704, 
December 27, 2006; 73 FR 12024, March 6, 2008). Based on the new 
listing determination, NMFS is required by the ESA to designate 
critical habitat separately for both the North Atlantic right whale and 
the North Pacific right whale.


In April 2008, a final critical habitat determination was published for 
the North Pacific right whale (73 FR 19000; April 8, 2008). At this 
time, NMFS is preparing a proposal to designate critical habitat for 
the North Atlantic right whale.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Endangered Species Act


Alternatives:


Because this rule is presently in the beginning stages of development, 
no alternatives have been formulated or analyzed at this time.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because this rule is presently in the beginning stages of development, 
no analysis has been completed at this time to assess costs and 
benefits.


Risks:


Loss of critical habitat for a species listed as protected under the 
ESA and MMPA, as well as potential loss of right whales due to habitat 
loss.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No

[[Page 79501]]

Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Marta Nammack
Office of Protected Resources
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
1315 East-West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 301 713-1401
Fax: 301 427-2523
Email: marta.nammack@noaa.gov
RIN: 0648-AY54
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOC--NOAA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

28. CERTIFICATION OF NATIONS WHOSE FISHING VESSELS ARE ENGAGED IN 
ILLEGAL, UNREPORTED, AND UNREGULATED FISHING OR BYCATCH OF PROTECTED 
LIVING MARINE RESOURCES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


16 USC 1801 et seq; 16 USC 1826(d) to 1826(k)


CFR Citation:


50 CFR 300


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, January 12, 2011, Report due to Congress 16 USC 
1826h.


Report on countries identified as having vessels engaged in IUU 
fishing.


Abstract:


The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) is establishing a process 
of identification and certification to address illegal, unreported, or 
unregulated (IUU) activities and bycatch of protected species in 
international fisheries. Nations whose fishing vessels engage, or have 
been engaged, in IUU fishing or bycatch of protected living marine 
resources would be identified in a biennial report to Congress, as 
required under section 403 of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation 
and Management Reauthorization Act (MSRA) of 2006. NMFS would 
subsequently certify whether identified nations have taken appropriate 
corrective action with respect to the activities of its fishing 
vessels, as required under section 403 of MSRA.


Statement of Need:


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National 
Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) proposes regulations to set forth 
identification and certification procedures for nations whose vessels 
engage in illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing activities 
or bycatch of protected living marine resources pursuant to the High 
Seas Fishing Moratorium Protection Act (Moratorium Protection Act). 
Specifically, the Moratorium Protection Act requires the Secretary of 
Commerce to identify in a biennial report to Congress those foreign 
nations whose vessels are engaged in IUU fishing or fishing that 
results in bycatch of protected living marine resources. The Moratorium 
Protection Act also requires the establishment of procedures to certify 
whether nations identified in the biennial report are taking 
appropriate corrective actions to address IUU fishing or bycatch of 
protected living marine resources by fishing vessels of that nation. 
Based upon the outcome of the certification procedures developed in 
this rulemaking, nations could be subject to import prohibitions on 
certain fisheries products and other measures under the authority 
provided in the High Seas Driftnet Fisheries Enforcement Act if they 
are not positively certified by the Secretary of Commerce.


Summary of Legal Basis:


NOAA is proposing these regulations pursuant to its rulemaking 
authority under sections 609 and 610 of the High Seas Driftnet Fishing 
Moratorium Protection Act (16 U.S.C. 1826j and k), as amended by the 
Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization 
Act.


Alternatives:


NMFS developed alternatives for the Secretary of Commerce to make a 
positive certification that a nation, once identified as having vessels 
engaged in illegal, unregulated, and unreported (IUU) fishing, has 
taken sufficient corrective action against those vessels or is a member 
of a regional fishery management organization that has adopted 
effective measures to address the IUU activities. NMFS also developed 
alternatives for the Secretary of Commerce to make a positive 
certification that a nation, once identified as having vessels engaged 
in bycatch of protected living marine resources (PLMR), has adopted a 
regulatory program to conserve those PLMR that is comparable in 
effectiveness to the United States and which collects data to support 
international assessment and conservation efforts.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because this rule is under development, NMFS does not currently have 
estimates of the amount of product that is imported into the United 
States from other nations whose vessels are engaged in illegal, 
unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing or bycatch of protected 
living marine resources. Therefore, quantification of the economic 
impacts of this rulemaking is not possible at this time. This 
rulemaking has not been determined to be economically significant under 
E.O. 12866; however, it is considered significant because it raises 
novel or legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates, the 
President's Priorities, and the principles set forth in the Executive 
order.


Risks:


The risks associated with not pursuing the proposed rulemaking include 
allowing IUU fishing activities and/or bycatch of protected living 
marine resources by foreign vessels to continue without an effective 
tool to aid in combating such activities.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           06/11/07                    72 FR 33436
ANPRM Comment Period End        07/05/07
NPRM                            01/14/09                     74 FR 2019
NPRM Comment Period End         05/14/09
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.

[[Page 79502]]

Agency Contact:
Christopher Rogers
Division Chief
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
1315 East-West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 301 713-9090
Fax: 301 713-9106
Email: christopher.rogers@noaa.gov
Related RIN: Related to 0648-AV23
RIN: 0648-AV51
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOC--NOAA

<###DOC>

29. CRITICAL HABITAT DESIGNATION FOR COOK INLET BELUGA WHALE UNDER THE 
ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


16 USC 1531 et seq


CFR Citation:


50 CFR 226


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) listed the Cook Inlet 
beluga whale Distinct Population Segment as endangered under the 
Endangered Species Act on October 17, 2009. NMFS is required to 
designate critical habitat no later than one year after the publication 
of a listing. NMFS intends to publish a proposed rule by October 17, 
2009.


Statement of Need:


The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) listed the Cook Inlet 
beluga whale Distinct Population Segment as endangered under the 
Endangered Species Act on October 17, 2009. NMFS is required to 
designate critical habitat no later than one year after the publication 
of a listing. NMFS intends to publish a proposed rule by October 17, 
2009.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Endangered Species Act


Alternatives:


Alternative 1. No action (status quo): NMFS would not designate 
critical habitat (CH) in Cook Inlet, Alaska, for the Cook Inlet beluga 
whale. Conservation and recovery of the listed species would depend 
exclusively upon the protections provided under the ``jeopardy'' 
provisions of Section 7 of the ESA.


Alternative 2. Designate Area 1 and Area 2, which encompass all of 
upper-Cook Inlet, north of a line at 60[deg] 25' north latitude, and 
portions of mid- and lower-Cook Inlet, extending south along the west 
side of the Cook Inlet, following the tidal flats into Kamishak Bay to 
Douglas Reef, between MHHW and waters within two nautical miles of 
shore. It further includes all waters of Kachemak Bay, eastward of 
151[deg] 30' west longitude and seaward of MHHW.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The post-designation incremental costs are estimated to range from 
$187,000 to $571,000, in present value terms, at a 3 percent discount 
rate, and from $157,000 to $472,000 at a 7 percent discount rate.


Approximately six Federal action agencies for section 7 consultations 
are anticipated to bear 70 percent ($398,000) of these costs, while 26 
percent ($148,000) are expected to accrue to NMFS, as the consulting 
agency. The remaining four percent ($25,000) of these costs may be 
borne by third parties, during the consultations. Of the total costs to 
Federal action agencies, the DOD is anticipated to bear approximately 
76 percent ($302,000). This is followed by USACE (9 percent; $37,000), 
NMFS (7 percent; $28,000), FERC (7 percent; $28,000), EPA (1 percent; 
$3,000), and FHWA (less than 1 percent; less than $1,000).


Benefits are qualitative: Area more attractive to workers in various 
industrial sectors; anticipated conservation and recovery species; and 
the general stability in associated environs should provide increases 
in welfare to tourists, recreationists, wildlife watchers, Cook Inlet 
Ferry passengers, and future cruise ship passengers. This should result 
in higher revenues for relevant businesses. Other wildlife and fish 
species will benefit, resulting in overall improvements in commercial, 
recreational, personal use, and subsistence uses. The increase in Cook 
Inlet beluga whale populations, in the longer term, will provide more 
frequent subsistence harvest opportunities to the Alaska Natives and 
allow future generations to practice their traditional ways. It will 
enhance passive-use benefits among those who value this species and the 
myriad elements and aspects of the natural habitat that sustains it. 
Finally, as the ESA is carried out, there are expected to be scientific 
and educational benefits to the Nation.


Risks:


Loss of critical habitat for the Cook Inlet beluga whale Distinct 
Population Segment and connected loss of Cook Inlet beluga whale 
members.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           04/14/09                    74 FR 17131
ANPRM Comment Period End        05/14/09
NPRM                            12/02/09                    74 FR 63080
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    01/12/10                     75 FR 1582
NPRM Comment Period End         02/01/10
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State, Tribal


Agency Contact:
Marta Nammack
Office of Protected Resources
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
1315 East-West Highway
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: 301 713-1401
Fax: 301 427-2523
Email: marta.nammack@noaa.gov
RIN: 0648-AX50
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOC--NOAA

<###DOC>

30. FISHERIES OFF WEST COAST STATES; PACIFIC COAST GROUNDFISH FISHERY; 
AMENDMENTS 20 AND 21; TRAWL RATIONALIZATION PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


16 USC 1801 et seq


CFR Citation:


50 CFR 660


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The trawl rationalization program creates an individual fishing quota

[[Page 79503]]

(IFQ) program for the shore-based trawl fleet; and cooperative (coop) 
programs for the at-sea trawl fleet in the Pacific Coast Groundfish 
Fishery. This rulemaking includes regulations to implement Amendments 
20 and 21 to the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery Management Plan 
(FMP). Amendment 20 creates the structure and management details of the 
trawl rationalization program, which would be a limited access 
privilege program (LAPP) under the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery 
Conservation and Management Act (MSA), as reauthorized in 2007. 
Amendment 21, intersector allocation, allocates the groundfish stocks 
between trawl and non-trawl fisheries.


Statement of Need:


The trawl rationalization program is intended to increase net economic 
benefits, create individual economic stability, provide full 
utilization of the trawl sector allocation, consider environmental 
impacts, and achieve individual accountability of catch and bycatch. 
This rule would establish the key components that would be necessary to 
implement the trawl rationalization program at the start of the 2011 
fishery.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 303A of the Magnuson-Stevens Act.


Alternatives:


The Pacific Fishery Management Council (the Council) prepared two 
environmental impact statement (EIS) documents: Amendment 20--
Rationalization of the Pacific Coast Groundfish Limited Entry Trawl 
Fishery, which would create the structure and management details of the 
trawl fishery rationalization program; and Amendment 21--Allocation of 
Harvest Opportunity Between Sectors of the Pacific Coast Groundfish 
Fishery, which would allocate the groundfish stocks between trawl and 
non-trawl fisheries. These EISs covered a range of alternatives. The 
Regulatory Impact Review and Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis 
(RIR/IRFA) for this rule focuses on the two key alternatives--the No-
Action Alternative and the Preferred Alternative. By focusing on the 
two key alternatives (no action and preferred) in the RIR/IRFA, it 
encompasses parts of the other alternatives and informs the reader of 
these proposed regulations. Under the no action alternative, the 
current, primary management tool used to control the Pacific coast 
groundfish trawl catch includes a system of two month cumulative 
landing limits for most species and season closures for Pacific 
whiting. This management program would continue under the no action 
alternative. The analysis of the preferred alternative describes what 
is likely to occur as a result of the proposed action. Under the 
preferred alternative, the existing shore-based whiting and shore-based 
non-whiting sectors of the Pacific Coast groundfish limited entry trawl 
fishery would be managed as one sector under a system of IFQs, and the 
at-sea whiting sectors of the fishery would be managed under a system 
of sector-specific harvesting cooperatives (coops).


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The RIR/IRFA reviewed and summarized the benefits and costs, and the 
economic effects of the Council's recommendations. The major 
conclusions of the economic model suggest that (with landings held at 
2004 levels), the current groundfish fleet (non-whiting component), 
which consisted of 117 vessels in 2004, will be reduced by roughly 50 
percent to 66 percent, or 40 to 60 vessels under an IFQ program. The 
reduction in fleet size implies cost savings of $18 to $22 million for 
the year 2004 (most recent year of the data). Vessels that remain 
active will, on average, be more cost efficient and will benefit from 
economies of scale that are currently unexploited under controlled 
access regulations in the fishery. The cost savings estimates are 
significant, amounting to approximately half of the costs incurred 
currently, suggesting that IFQ management may be an attractive option 
for the Pacific Coast Groundfish Fishery. The increase in profits that 
commercial harvesters are expected to experience under the preferred 
alternative may render them better able to sustain the costs of 
complying with the new reporting and monitoring requirements. The costs 
of at-sea observers may reduce profits by about $2.2 million, depending 
on the fee structure. However, the profits earned by the non-whiting 
sector would still be substantially higher under the preferred 
alternative than under the no action alternative.


Risks:


Under the no action alternative, cumulative landing limits for target 
species have to be set lower because the bycatch of overfished species 
cannot be directly controlled. Introducing accountability at the 
individual vessel level by means of IFQs provides a strong incentive 
for bycatch avoidance.


There will likely be a lower motivation to ``race for fish'' due to 
coop harvest privileges. This is expected to result in improved product 
quality, slower-paced harvest activity, increased yield (which should 
increase ex-vessel prices), and enhanced flexibility and ability for 
business planning.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice of Availability          05/12/10                    75 FR 26702
First Proposed Rule             06/10/10                    75 FR 32994
First Proposed Rule 
    Correction                  06/30/10                    75 FR 37744
First Proposed Rule 
    Comment Period End          07/12/10
Second Proposed Rule            08/31/10                    75 FR 53379
Second Proposed Rule 
    Comment Period End          09/30/10
First Final Rule                10/01/10                    75 FR 60868
Second Final Rule               12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Barry Thom
Regional Administrator, Northwest Region, NMFS
Department of Commerce
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
Building 1, 7600 Sand Point Way NE.
Seattle, WA 48115-0070
Phone: 206 526-6150
Fax: 206 526-6426
Email: barry.thom@noaa.gov
Related RIN: Related to 0648-AX98
RIN: 0648-AY68
BILLING CODE 3510-12-S

[[Page 79504]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (DOD)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
Background
The Department of Defense (DoD) is the largest Federal department 
consisting of 3 Military departments (Army, Navy, and Air Force), 10 
Unified Combatant Commands, 14 Defense agencies, and 10 DoD Field 
Activities. It has 1,434,761 military personnel and 770,569 civilians 
assigned as of June 30, 2010, and over 200 large and medium 
installations in the continental United States, U. S. territories, and 
foreign countries. The overall size, composition, and dispersion of 
DoD, coupled with an innovative regulatory program, presents a 
challenge to the management of the Defense regulatory efforts under 
Executive Order 12866 ``Regulatory Planning and Review'' of September 
30, 1993.
Because of its diversified nature, DoD is affected by the regulations 
issued by regulatory agencies such as the Departments of Energy, Health 
and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, 
Transportation, Treasury, Commerce, and State, and the Office of 
Personnel Management, General Services Administration, and 
Environmental Protection Agency. In order to develop the best possible 
regulations that embody the principles and objectives embedded in 
Executive Order 12866, there must be coordination of proposed 
regulations among the regulatory agencies and the affected DoD 
components. Coordinating the proposed regulations in advance throughout 
an organization as large as DoD is straightforward, yet a formidable 
undertaking.
DoD is not a regulatory agency, but occasionally it issues regulations 
that have an effect on the public. These regulations, while small in 
number compared to the regulating agencies, can be significant as 
defined in Executive Order 12866. In addition, some of DoD's 
regulations may affect the regulatory agencies. DoD, as an integral 
part of its program, not only receives coordinating actions from the 
regulating agencies, but coordinates with the agencies that are 
affected by its regulations as well.
Overall Priorities
The Department needs to function at a reasonable cost, while ensuring 
that it does not impose ineffective and unnecessarily burdensome 
regulations on the public. The rulemaking process should be responsive, 
efficient, cost-effective, and both fair and perceived as fair. This is 
being done in DoD while reacting to the contradictory pressures of 
providing more services with fewer resources. The Department of 
Defense, as a matter of overall priority for its regulatory program, 
fully incorporates the provisions of the President's priorities and 
objectives under Executive Order 12866.
The Department also participates with GSA, NASA, and OFPP to form the 
Federal Acquisition Regulatory Council. The FAR Council assists in the 
direction and coordination of Government wide procurement policy and 
Government wide procurement regulator activities in the Federal 
Government (41 U.S.C. 421). Together, DOD, GSA, and NASA jointly issue 
and maintain the Federal Acquisition Regulation.
Administration Priorities:
1. Rulemakings that promote open Government and that use disclosure as 
            a regulatory tool.
The Department plans to:
 Revise the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) to inform 
            contractors of this statutory requirement to make Federal 
            Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System 
            information, excluding past performance reviews, available 
            to the public;
 Finalize the FAR rule that implements the requirement for 
            reporting first-tier subcontracting data for new contracts 
            using Recovery Act funds; and
 Finalize the FAR rule that implements the Federal Funding 
            Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006, which requires 
            the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to establish a 
            free, public, website containing full disclosure of all 
            Federal contract award information. This rule requires 
            contractors to report executive compensation and first-tier 
            subcontractor awards on unclassified contracts expected to 
            be $25,000 or more, except contracts with individuals.
2. Rulemakings that simplify or streamline regulations and reduce or 
            eliminate unjustified burdens.
The Department plans to:
 Revise the FAR to delete part 2 of the SF 330, which collects 
            general qualifications data not related to a particular 
            planned contract action. The Online Representations and 
            Certifications Application (ORCA) now collects this data 
            centrally from interested Architect-Engineer vendors at the 
            time they complete the other representations and 
            certifications in ORCA;
 Revise the FAR to incorporate changes from a final Department 
            of Labor rule that removes the requirement to submit 
            complete social security numbers and home addresses of 
            individual workers in weekly payroll submissions. Removal 
            of this personal information from payroll records avoids 
            unnecessary disclosure issues;
 Finalize the revision of DFARS requirements for reporting the 
            loss, theft, damage, or destruction of Government property;
 Review of the DFARS requirements for reporting Government 
            Furnished Equipment and Government Furnished Material in 
            the DoD Item Unique Identification (IUID) registry;
 Remove the DFARS requirement to use DD Forms 2626 and 2631 to 
            report past performance information for construction and 
            architect/engineer services instead of the standard FAR 
            procedures;
 Revise the DFARS to permit offerors to provide alternative 
            line-item structure from that shown in the solicitation to 
            reflect the offeror's business practices for selling and 
            billing commercial items and initial provisioning spares 
            for weapon systems;
 Delete redundant DFARS text that limits placement of orders 
            against contracts with contractors that have been debarred 
            suspended or proposed for debarment. This requirement is 
            now incorporated into the FAR;
 Propose changes to simplify and clarify the DFARS coverage of 
            patents, data, and copyrights, dramatically reducing the 
            amount of regulatory text and the number of required 
            clauses;
 Simplify and clarify the DFARS coverage of multiyear 
            acquisitions;
 Establish a method in the DFARS for electronic issuance of 
            orders; and
 Improve the contract closeout process.
3. Regulations of Particular Interest to Small Business
Of interest to small businesses are regulations to:
 Implement in the FAR changes to the requirement for small 
            disadvantaged businesses certification;
 Revise the FAR to implement changes in the HUBZone Program, in 
            accordance with Small Business Administration regulations;

[[Page 79505]]

 Consider revisions to the FAR to address the findings of the 
            Rothe case that Federal contracting programs for minority-
            owned and other small businesses that implement 10 U.S.C. 
            2323 are ``facially'' unconstitutional;
 Establish a DoD program to enhance participation of 
            Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority-
            Serving Institutions in defense research programs;
 Conform the DFARS to the FAR with respect to the use of the 
            Electronic Subcontracting Reporting System; and
 Require public disclosure of justification and approval 
            documents for noncompetitive 8(a) contracts over $20 
            million.
4. Regulations with international effects or interest
Of international effect or interest are regulations to:
 Implement in the FAR statutory certification requirement that 
            each offeror does not engage in any activity for which 
            sanctions may be imposed under section 5 of the Iran 
            Sanctions Act. Also implements a procurement prohibition 
            relating to contracts with persons that export sensitive 
            technology to Iran;
 Establish in the FAR processes and criteria for waiver of the 
            prohibition on contracting with entities that conduct 
            restricted business operations in Sudan;
 Implement in the DFARS the determinations regarding 
            participation of South Caucasus/Central and South Asian 
            states in acquisitions in support of operations in 
            Afghanistan;
 Finalize the FAR rule that prohibits Government contracts with 
            any foreign incorporated entity that is treated as an 
            inverted domestic corporation under section 835(b) of the 
            Homeland Security Act of 2002 or any subsidiary of such 
            entity;
 Implement in the FAR and DFARS the annual consolidated 
            appropriation act exemption from the Buy American Act/
            Balance of Payments Program restrictions on the acquisition 
            of foreign commercial information technology items as 
            construction material; and
 Finalize in the FAR and DFARS the rules that increase trade 
            agreements thresholds, as specified by the United States 
            Trade Representative.
Specific DoD Priorities:
For this Regulatory Plan, there are seven specific DoD priorities, all 
of which reflect the established regulatory principles. In those areas 
where rulemaking or participation in the regulatory process is 
required, DoD has studied and developed policy and regulations that 
incorporate the provisions of the President's priorities and objectives 
under the Executive order.
DoD has focused its regulatory resources on the most serious 
environmental, health, and safety risks. Perhaps most significant is 
that each of the priorities described below promulgates regulations to 
offset the resource impacts of Federal decisions on the public or to 
improve the quality of public life, such as those regulations 
concerning acquisition, security, homeowners, education, and health 
affairs.
1. Regulatory Program of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
In 1988, the Army Corps of Engineers published as appendix B of 33 CFR 
part 325, a rule that governs compliance with the National 
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for the Army's Regulatory Program. On 
April 2, 2010, the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works 
announced that the Army Corps of Engineers would conduct rulemaking to 
modify appendix B to reflect a limited change in policy addressing 
permit applications for surface coal mining activities in Appalachia. 
The modification of appendix B will focus on the NEPA scope of review 
for considering the effects of surface coal mining in Appalachia on the 
aquatic environment, to enhance protection of aquatic resources.
2. Defense Procurement and Acquisition Policy
The Department of Defense continuously reviews the DFARS and continues 
to lead Government efforts to:
 Revise the DFARS to implement the Weapons System Acquisition 
            Reform Act of 2009 - including acquisition strategies to 
            ensure competition throughout life-cycle of major defense 
            acquisition programs and address organizational conflicts 
            of interest in major defense acquisition programs;
 Revise DFARS to ensure continuation of contractor services in 
            support of mission essential functions during an emergency, 
            such as an influenza pandemic;
 Clarify DoD policy in the DFARS regarding the definition and 
            administration of contractor business systems to improve 
            the effectiveness of DCMA/DCAA oversight of contractor 
            business systems;
 Implement in the DFARS statutory requirement to inspect 
            military facilities, infrastructure, and equipment for 
            safety and habitability prior to use;
 Revise the FAR to implement the Executive orders relating to 
            allowability of labor relations costs, non-displacement of 
            qualified workers, notification of employee rights under 
            Federal labor laws, and Federal leadership in 
            environmental, energy, and economic performance;
 Revise the FAR to adopt biobased procurement preferences and 
            collect contractor information on use of biobased products;
 Revise the FAR to address service contractor employee personal 
            conflicts of interest and organizational conflicts of 
            interest and limit contractor access to information; and
 Provide enhanced competition for task- and delivery-order 
            contracts and additional market research before awarding a 
            task or delivery order in excess of the simplified 
            acquisition threshold.
3. Logistics and Materiel Readiness, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense published or plans to publish rules on 
contractors supporting the military in contingency operations:
 Final Rule: Private Security Contractors (PSCs) Operating in 
            Contingency Operations. In order to meet the mandate of 
            section 862 of the 2008 National Defense Authorization Act, 
            this rule establishes policy, assigns responsibilities and 
            provides procedures for the regulation of the selection, 
            accountability, training, equipping, and conduct of 
            personnel performing private security functions under a 
            covered contract during contingency operations. It also 
            assigns responsibilities and establishes procedures for 
            incident reporting, use of and accountability for 
            equipment, rules for the use of force, and a process for 
            administrative action or the removal, as appropriate, of 
            PSCs and PSC personnel. DoD published an interim final rule 
            on July 17, 2009 (74 FR 34690 to 34694) with an effective 
            date of July 17, 2009. The comment period ended August 31, 
            2009. DoD, in coordination with the Department of State and 
            the United States Agency

[[Page 79506]]

            for International Development, have prepared a final rule, 
            which includes the responses to the public comments, and 
            incorporates changes to the interim final rule, where 
            appropriate. The final rule is expected to be published the 
            first or second quarter of FY 2011.
 Interim Final Rule: Operational Contract Support for 
            Contingency Operations. This rule will incorporate the 
            latest changes and lessons learned into policy and 
            procedures for program management for the preparation and 
            execution of contracted support and the integration of DoD 
            contractor personnel into military contingency operations 
            outside the United States. DoD anticipates publishing the 
            interim final rule in the first or second quarter of FY 
            2011.
4. Installations and Environment, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense published a rule to assist eligible military 
and civilian Federal employee homeowners:
 Final Rule: This rule authorizes the Homeowners Assistance 
            Program (HAP) under section 3374 of title 42, United States 
            Code, to assist eligible military and civilian Federal 
            employee homeowners when the real estate market is 
            adversely affected by closure or reduction-in-scope of 
            operations. In accordance with DoD Directive 5101.1, ``DoD 
            Executive Agent,'' designates the Secretary of the Army as 
            the DoD Executive Agent for administering, managing, and 
            executing the HAP. Additionally, this rule allows the 
            Department of Defense to temporarily expand the existing 
            HAP in compliance with section 1001 of the American 
            Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. This temporary 
            expansion covers certain persons affected by BRAC 2005, 
            certain persons on permanent change of station orders, and 
            certain wounded persons and surviving spouses. This rule 
            updates policy, delegates authority, and assigns 
            responsibilities for managing Expanded HAP. This is an 
            economically significant rule. DoD published an interim 
            final rule on September 30, 2009 (74 FR 50109-50115), with 
            an effective date of September 30, 2009. The comment period 
            ended October 30, 2009. The final rule published November 
            16, 2010 (75 FR 69871) with an effective date of January 
            18, 2011.
5. Military Personnel Policy, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense published or plans to publish a rule 
implementing the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008, 
title V, Public Law 110-252 (the ``Post-9/11 GI Bill''):
 Interim Final Rule: This rule establishes policy, assigns 
            responsibilities, and prescribes procedures for carrying 
            out the Post-9/11 GI Bill. It establishes policy for the 
            use of supplemental educational assistance ``kickers,'' for 
            members with critical skills or specialties, or for members 
            serving additional service; for authorizing the 
            transferability of education benefits; and for the DoD 
            Education Benefits Fund Board of Actuaries. DoD published 
            an interim final rule on June 25, 2009 (74 FR 30212 to 
            30220) with an effective date of June 25, 2009. The comment 
            period ended July 27, 2009. DoD anticipates finalizing this 
            rule in the spring of 2011.
6. Military Community and Family Policy, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense published or plans to publish a rule to 
implement policy, assign responsibilities, and prescribe procedures for 
the operation of voluntary education programs within DoD.
 Proposed Rule: This rule implements policy, assigns 
            responsibilities, and prescribes procedures for the 
            operation of voluntary education programs within DoD. 
            Included are: Procedures for Service members participating 
            in education programs; guidelines for establishing, 
            maintaining, and operating voluntary education programs; 
            procedures for obtaining on-base voluntary education 
            programs and services; minimum criteria for selecting 
            institutions to deliver higher education programs and 
            services on military installations; and the Memorandum of 
            Understanding between educational institutions and DoD 
            prior to the disbursement of tuition assistance funds. This 
            is an economically significant rule. The proposed rule 
            published August 6, 2010 (75 FR 47504-47515). The comment 
            period ends October 5, 2010. DoD anticipates finalizing 
            this rule in the spring or fall of FY 2011.
7. Health Affairs, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense is able to meet its dual mission of wartime 
readiness and peacetime health care by operating an extensive network 
of medical treatment facilities. This network includes DoD's own 
military treatment facilities supplemented by civilian health care 
providers, facilities, and services under contract to DoD through the 
TRICARE program. TRICARE is a major health care program designed to 
improve the management and integration of DoD's health care delivery 
system. The program's goal is to increase access to health care 
services, improve health care quality, and control health care costs.
The TRICARE Management Activity has published or plans to publish the 
following rules:
 Final rule on CHAMPUS/TRICARE: Inclusion of TRICARE Retail 
            Pharmacy Program in Federal Procurement of Pharmaceuticals. 
            This rule provided an additional opportunity for comment on 
            the final rule of March 17, 2009, implementing provisions 
            of section 703 of the National Defense Authorization Act 
            for Fiscal Year 2008. This statute extended pharmaceutical 
            Federal Ceiling Prices to TRICARE Retail Pharmacy Program 
            prescriptions. The Department of Defense (DoD) issued a 
            final rule on March 17, 2009, implementing the law. On 
            November 30, 2009, the U.S. District Court for the District 
            of Columbia ``ordered that the final rule is remanded 
            without vacatur for the Defense Department to consider in 
            its discretion whether to readopt the current iteration of 
            the rule or adopt another approach to implement 10 U.S.C. 
            1074g(f).'' As part of DoD's reconsideration, DoD solicited 
            public comments on the implementation of the statute, DoD's 
            resulting regulations, and the matters addressed for DoD's 
            consideration in the Court's Memorandum Opinion. The 
            proposed rule was published February 9, 2010 (75 FR 6335-
            6336). The comment period ended on March 11, 2010. DoD 
            anticipates publishing a second final rule in the first 
            quarter of FY 2011.
 Final rule on TRICARE: Relationship Between the TRICARE 
            Program and Employer-Sponsored Group Health Coverage. This 
            rule implements section 1097c of title 10, United States 
            Code. This law prohibits employers from offering incentives 
            to TRICARE-eligible employees to not enroll, or to 
            terminate enrollment, in an employer-offered Group Health 
            Plan (GHP) that is or would be primary to TRICARE. 
            Cafeteria plans that comport with section 125 of the 
            Internal Revenue Code will be permissible so long as the 
            plan treats all employees the same and does not illegally 
            take TRICARE eligibility into account. The proposed rule 
            was published March 28, 2008

[[Page 79507]]

            (73 FR 16612). The comment period ended May 27, 2008. The 
            final rule published April 9, 2010 (75 FR 18051 to 18055) 
            with an effective date of June 18, 2010.
 Proposed rule on TRICARE: Sole Community Hospital Payment 
            Reform. This rule implements the statutory provision in 
            section 1079(j)(2) of title 10, United States Code that 
            TRICARE payment methods for institutional care shall be 
            determined to the extent practicable in accordance with the 
            same reimbursement rules as those that apply to payments to 
            providers of services of the same type under Medicare. This 
            proposed rule implements a reimbursement methodology 
            similar to that furnished to Medicare beneficiaries for 
            services provided by sole community hospitals. DoD 
            anticipates publishing a proposed rule in the first or 
            second quarter of FY 2011.
 Proposed rule on TRICARE: Long Term Care Hospital Prospective 
            Payment System. This rule adopts a reimbursement 
            methodology for Long Term Care Hospitals similar to 
            Medicare's Long Term Care Hospital Prospective Payment 
            System. DoD anticipates publishing a proposed rule in the 
            spring of FY 2011.
8. Networks and Information Integration, Department of Defense
The Department of Defense will publish a rule regarding Defense 
Industrial Base Voluntary Cyber Security and Information Assurance 
Information Sharing:
 Interim Final Rule: This rule establishes cyber threat 
            information sharing, reporting, and analysis mechanisms 
            between DoD and cleared Defense Industrial Base (DIB) 
            contractors to enhance cyber threat situational awareness 
            and threat response. The rule establishes a voluntary 
            information sharing environment with DIB partners to 
            address the unacceptable risk and imminent threat to 
            national and economic security stemming from the 
            unauthorized access by U.S. adversaries or business 
            competitors to critical DoD unclassified information 
            resident on, or transiting, DIB unclassified networks. The 
            rule describes the collaborative DoD and DIB corporate-
            level partnership to enhance security of DIB networks; 
            increase USG and industry knowledge of advanced cyber 
            threats; provide near-real time cyber threat information 
            sharing and understand the impact of data compromise on DoD 
            operational activities. Participation in the DIB Cyber 
            Security/Information Assurance program is voluntary and 
            open to all qualified cleared contractors. DoD anticipates 
            publishing an interim final rule in the second quarter of 
            FY 2011.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOD--Office of the Secretary (OS)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

31. VOLUNTARY EDUCATION PROGRAMS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


10 USC 2005; 10 USC 2007


CFR Citation:


32 CFR 68


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule implements policy, assigns responsibilities, and prescribes 
procedures for the operation of voluntary education programs within 
DoD. Included are: Procedures for Service members participating in 
education programs; guidelines for establishing, maintaining, and 
operating voluntary education programs, including but not limited to, 
instructor-led courses offered on-installation and off-installation, as 
well as via distance learning; procedures for obtaining on-base 
voluntary education programs and services; minimum criteria for 
selecting institutions to deliver higher education programs and 
services on military installations; the establishment of a DoD 
Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding between DoD 
and educational institutions receiving tuition assistance payments; and 
procedures for other education programs for Service members and their 
adult family members.


Statement of Need:


This rule implements policy, assigns responsibilities, and prescribes 
procedures for the operation of voluntary education programs within 
DoD. Included are: Procedures for Service members participating in 
education programs; guidelines for establishing, maintaining, and 
operating voluntary education programs, including but not limited to, 
instructor-led courses offered on-installation and off-installation, as 
well as via distance learning; procedures for obtaining on-base 
voluntary education programs and services; minimum criteria for 
selecting institutions to deliver higher education programs and 
services on military installations; the establishment of a DoD 
Voluntary Education Partnership Memorandum of Understanding between DoD 
and educational institutions receiving tuition assistance payments; and 
procedures for other education programs for Service members and their 
adult family members.


Summary of Legal Basis:


sections 2005 and 2007 of title 10, United States Code


Alternatives:


None.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Voluntary Education Programs include: High School Completion /Diploma; 
Military Tuition Assistance (TA); Postsecondary Degree Programs; 
Independent Study and Distance Learning Programs; College Credit 
Examination Program; Academic Skills Program; and Certification/
Licensure Programs. Funding for Voluntary Education Programs during 
2009 was $800 million, which included tuition assistance and 
operational costs. This funding provided more than 650,000 individuals 
(Service members and their adult family members) the opportunity to 
participate in Voluntary Education Programs around the world.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            08/06/10                    75 FR 47504
NPRM Comment Period End         10/05/10
Final Action                    04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None

[[Page 79508]]

Agency Contact:
Kerrie Tucker
Department of Defense
Office of the Secretary
Defense Pentagon
Washington, DC 20301
Phone: 703 602-4949
RIN: 0790-AI50
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOD--Office of Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs (DODOASHA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

32.  TRICARE; REIMBURSEMENT OF SOLE COMMUNITY HOSPITALS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


5 USC 301; 10 USC ch 55


CFR Citation:


32 CFR 199


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule is to implement the statutory provision at 10 U.S.C. 
1079(j)(2) that TRICARE payment methods for institutional care be 
determined, to the extent practicable, in accordance with the same 
reimbursement rules as those that apply to payments to providers of 
services of the same type under Medicare. This proposed rule implements 
a reimbursement methodology similar to that furnished to Medicare 
beneficiaries for inpatient services provided by Sole Community 
Hospitals (SCHs). It will be phased in over a several-year period.


Statement of Need:


This rule is being published to implement the statutory provision in 10 
U.S.C. 1079(j)(2), that TRICARE payment methods for institutional care 
be determined, to the extent practicable, in accordance with the same 
reimbursement rules as apply to payments to providers of services of 
the same type under Medicare. This proposed rule implements a 
reimbursement methodology similar to that furnished to Medicare 
beneficiaries for inpatient services provided by Sole Community 
Hospitals.


Summary of Legal Basis:


There is a statutory basis for this proposed rule: 10 U.S.C. 
1079(j)(2).


Alternatives:


Alternatives were considered for phasing in the needed reform and an 
alternative was selected for a gradual, smooth transition.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


We estimate the total reduction (from the proposed changes in this 
rule) in hospital revenues under the SCH reform for its first year of 
implementation (assumed for purposes of this RIA to be FY 2011), 
compared to expenditures in that same period without the proposed SCH 
changes, to be approximately $190 million. The estimated impact for FYs 
2012 through 2015 (in $ millions) is $208, $229, $252, and $278 
respectively.


Risks:


Failure to publish this proposed rule would result in noncompliance 
with a statutory provision.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Marty Maxey
Department of Defense
Office of Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs
1200 Defense Pentagon
Washington, DC 20301
Phone: 303 676-3627
RIN: 0720-AB41
BILLING CODE 5001-06-S

[[Page 79509]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION (ED)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
I. Introduction
The U.S. Department of Education (Department) supports States, local 
communities, institutions of higher education, and others in improving 
education nationwide and in helping to ensure that all Americans 
receive a quality education. We provide leadership and financial 
assistance for education at all levels to a wide range of stakeholders 
and individuals, including State educational agencies, local school 
districts, early learning programs, elementary and secondary schools, 
institutions of higher education, vocational schools, not-for-profit 
organizations, members of the public, and many others. These efforts 
are helping to ensure that all students will be ready for college and 
careers, and that all students have the opportunity to attend 
postsecondary education.
We also vigorously monitor and enforce the implementation of Federal 
civil rights laws in educational programs and activities that receive 
Federal financial assistance, and support innovation and research, 
evaluation, technical assistance, and dissemination of research 
findings to improve the quality of education.
Overall, the programs we administer will affect nearly every American 
during his or her life. Indeed, in the 2010 to 2011 school year, more 
than 1.5 million children, ages birth through 5 years, will participate 
in early learning programs under the Individuals with Disabilities 
Education Act (IDEA) and title I of the Elementary and Secondary 
Education Act of 1965, as amended (ESEA); about 50 million students 
will attend an estimated 99,000 elementary and secondary schools in 
approximately 13,800 public school districts; and about 20 million 
students will enroll in degree-granting postsecondary schools. All of 
these students may benefit from some degree of financial assistance or 
support from the Department.
In developing and implementing regulations, guidance, technical 
assistance, and approaches to compliance related to our programs, we 
are committed to working closely with affected persons and groups. 
Specifically, we work with a broad range of interested parties and the 
general public, including parents, students, and educators; other 
Federal agencies and State, local, and tribal governments; and 
neighborhood groups, schools, colleges, rehabilitation service 
providers, professional associations, advocacy organizations, 
community-based organizations, businesses, and labor organizations.
We also continue to seek greater and more useful public participation 
in our rulemaking activities through the use of transparent and 
interactive rulemaking procedures and new technologies. If we determine 
that it is necessary to develop regulations, we seek public 
participation at the key stages in the rulemaking process. We invite 
the public to submit comments on all proposed regulations through the 
Internet or by regular mail.
To facilitate the public's involvement, we participate in the Federal 
Docketing Management System (FDMS), an electronic single Governmentwide 
access point (www.regulations.gov) that enables the public to submit 
comments on different types of Federal regulatory documents and read 
and respond to comments submitted by other members of the public during 
the public comment period. This system provides the public the 
opportunity to submit a comment electronically on any notice of 
proposed rulemaking or interim final regulations open for comment, as 
well as read and print any supporting regulatory documents.
We are continuing to streamline information collections, reduce the 
burden on information providers involved in our programs, and make 
information easily accessible to the public.
II. Regulatory Priorities
A. American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
On February 17, 2009, President Obama signed into law the American 
Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), historic legislation 
designed to stimulate the economy, support job creation, and invest in 
critical sectors, including education. The ARRA lays the foundation for 
education reform by supporting investments in innovative strategies 
that are most likely to lead to improved results for children and 
youth, long-term gains in school and school system capacity, and 
increased productivity and effectiveness.
The ARRA provided funding for several key discretionary grant programs, 
including the Race to the Top Fund and the Investing in Innovation 
Fund. The Department issued regulations for these programs in 2009 and 
2010. To the extent Congress reauthorizes and appropriates funds for 
these programs in FY 2011, we may need to amend the regulations for 
these programs.
B. Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965, as Amended
On March 13, 2010, the Obama administration released the Blueprint for 
Reform: The Reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education 
Act, the President's plan for revising the ESEA. The blueprint can be 
found at the following Web site: http://www2.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/
blueprint/index.html.
We look forward to congressional reauthorization of the ESEA that will 
build on many of the reforms States and LEAs will be implementing under 
the ARRA grant programs described in this statement of regulatory 
priorities. As necessary, we intend to amend current regulations to 
reflect the reauthorization of this statute. In the interim, we may 
propose other amendments to the current regulations.
C. Higher Education Act of 1965, as Amended
In early 2011, the Department plans to issue final regulations to 
establish measures for determining whether certain postsecondary 
educational programs lead to gainful employment in a recognized 
occupation. These regulations also address the conditions under which 
these educational programs remain eligible for the student financial 
assistance programs authorized under title IV of the Higher Education 
Act of 1965, as amended (HEA).
On March 30, 2010, the President signed into law the Health Care and 
Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, Public Law 111-152, title II of 
which is the SAFRA Act. SAFRA made a number of changes to the Federal 
student financial aid programs under title IV of the HEA. One of the 
most significant changes made by SAFRA is to end new loans under the 
Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) Program authorized by title IV, 
part B, of the HEA as of July 1, 2010.
During the coming year, we plan to amend our regulations to address 
issues related to the termination of the FFEL Program and the 
Department's origination of all new loans under the William D. Ford 
Direct Loan Program, as well as other statutory provisions enacted 
under SAFRA. Unless subject to an exemption, regulations to reflect 
changes to the student financial aid programs under title IV of the HEA 
must

[[Page 79510]]

generally go through the negotiated rulemaking process.
D. Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
We plan to issue final regulations implementing changes to the part C 
program--the early intervention program for infants and toddlers with 
disabilities--under the IDEA.
E. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act
Given the President's emphasis on improving the collection and use of 
data as a key element of educational reform, we intend to issue a 
notice of proposed rulemaking to amend our current regulations for the 
Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) to ensure 
that States are able to effectively establish and expand robust 
statewide longitudinal data systems while protecting student privacy.
F. Other Potential Regulatory Activities
Congress may legislate to reauthorize the Adult Education and Family 
Literacy Act (AEFLA) (title II of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998) 
and the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. The Administration is 
working with Congress to ensure that any changes to these laws (1) 
improve the State grant and other programs providing assistance for 
adult basic education under the AEFLA and for vocational rehabilitation 
and independent living services for persons with disabilities under the 
Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and (2) provide greater accountability in 
the administration of programs under both statutes. Changes to our 
regulations may be necessary as a result of the reauthorization of 
these two statutes.
III. Principles for Regulating
Over the next year, other regulations may be needed because of new 
legislation or programmatic changes. In developing and promulgating 
regulations, we follow our Principles for Regulating, which determine 
when and how we will regulate. Through consistent application of the 
following principles, we have eliminated unnecessary regulations and 
identified situations in which major programs could be implemented 
without regulations or with limited regulatory action.
In deciding when to regulate, we consider the following:
 Whether regulations are essential to promote quality and 
            equality of opportunity in education.
 Whether a demonstrated problem cannot be resolved without 
            regulation.
 Whether regulations are necessary to provide a legally binding 
            interpretation to resolve ambiguity.
 Whether entities or situations subject to regulation are so 
            diverse that a uniform approach through regulation does 
            more harm than good.
 Whether regulations are needed to protect the Federal 
            interest; that is, to ensure that Federal funds are used 
            for their intended purpose and to eliminate fraud, waste, 
            and abuse.
In deciding how to regulate, we are mindful of the following 
principles:
 Regulate no more than necessary.
 Minimize burden to the extent possible and promote multiple 
            approaches to meeting statutory requirements if possible.
 Encourage coordination of federally funded activities with 
            State and local reform activities.
 Ensure that the benefits justify the costs of regulation.
 To the extent possible, establish performance objectives 
            rather than specify compliance behavior.
 Encourage flexibility, to the extent possible, so 
            institutional forces and incentives achieve desired 
            results.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

ED--Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

33.  TITLE IV OF THE HIGHER EDUCATION ACT OF 1965, AS AMENDED

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


20 USC title IV; PL 111-152


CFR Citation:


34 CFR ch VI


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Secretary proposes to amend its title IV, HEA student assistance 
regulations, to (1) reflect the termination of the Federal Family 
Education Loan Program pursuant to title II of the Health Care and 
Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, which is the SAFRA Act, and (2) 
reflect other statutory changes resulting from the SAFRA Act.


Statement of Need:


These regulations are needed to reflect the provisions of the SAFRA Act 
(title II of the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010), 
which terminated the Federal Family Education Loan (FFEL) program, and 
to reflect other amendments to the HEA resulting from the SAFRA Act.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010, Public Law 111-
152.


Alternatives:


The Department is still developing these proposed regulations; our 
discussion of alternatives will be included in the notice of proposed 
rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Estimates of the costs and benefits are currently under development and 
will be published in the proposed regulations.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
David Bergeron
Department of Education
Office of Postsecondary Education
Room 8022
1990 K Street NW.
Washington, DC 20006
Phone: 202 502-7815
Email: david.bergeron@ed.gov
RIN: 1840-AD05

[[Page 79511]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

ED--OPE

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

34.  PROGRAM INTEGRITY: GAINFUL EMPLOYMENT--MEASURES

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


20 USC 1001 to 1003; 20 USC 1070g; 20 USC 1085; 20 USC 1088; 20 USC 
1091 to 1092; 20 USC 1094; 20 USC 1099c; 20 USC 1099c-1; . . .


CFR Citation:


34 CFR 668


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Secretary amends the Student Assistance General Provisions to 
establish measures for determining whether certain postsecondary 
educational programs lead to gainful employment in recognized 
occupations, and the conditions under which those educational programs 
remain eligible for the student financial assistance programs 
authorized under title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as 
amended.


Statement of Need:


These regulations are needed to establish measures for determining 
whether certain postsecondary educational programs lead to gainful 
employment in a recognized occupation.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended.


Alternatives:


A discussion of alternatives was outlined in the Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking published on July 26, 2010.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Estimates of anticipated costs and benefits are set forth in the Notice 
of Proposed Rulemaking published on July 26, 2010.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/26/10                    75 FR 43616
NPRM Comment Period End         09/09/10
Final Action                    02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
John A. Kolotos
Department of Education
Office of Postsecondary Education
Room 8018
1990 K Street NW.
Washington, DC 20006-8502
Phone: 202 502-7762
Email: john.kolotos@ed.gov

Fred Sellers
Department of Education
Office of Postsecondary Education
Room 8021
1990 K Street NW.
Washington, DC 20006
Phone: 202 502-7502
Email: fred.sellers@ed.gov
Related RIN: Previously reported as 1840-AD04
RIN: 1840-AD06
BILLING CODE 4000-01-S

[[Page 79512]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY (DOE)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory and Deregulatory Priorities
The Department of Energy (Department or DOE) makes vital contributions 
to the Nation's welfare through its activities focused on improving 
national security, energy supply, energy efficiency, environmental 
remediation, and energy research. The Department's mission is to:
 Promote dependable, affordable, and environmentally sound 
            production and distribution of energy;
 Advance energy efficiency and conservation;
 Provide responsible stewardship of the Nation's nuclear 
            weapons;
 Provide a responsible resolution to the environmental legacy 
            of nuclear weapons production;
 Strengthen U.S. scientific discovery, economic 
            competitiveness, and improving quality of life through 
            innovations in science and technology.
The Department's regulatory activities are essential to achieving its 
critical mission and to implementing major initiatives of the 
President's National Energy Policy. Among other things, The Regulatory 
Plan and the Unified Agenda contain the rulemakings the Department will 
be engaged in during the coming year to fulfill the Department's 
commitment to meeting deadlines for issuance of energy conservation 
standards and related test procedures. The Regulatory Plan and Unified 
Agenda also reflect the Department's continuing commitment to cut 
costs, reduce regulatory burden, and increase responsiveness to the 
public.
Energy Efficiency Program for Consumer Products and Commercial 
Equipment
The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) requires DOE to set 
appliance efficiency standards at levels that achieve the maximum 
improvement in energy efficiency that is technologically feasible and 
economically justified. The standards already published in 2010 have a 
net benefit to the Nation of between $7.7 billion (7 percent discount 
rate) and 23.5 billion (3 percent discount rate) over 30 years. By 
2045, these standards will have saved enough energy to operate all U.S. 
homes for 4 months.
The Department continues to follow its schedule for setting new 
appliance efficiency standards. These rulemakings are expected to save 
American consumers billions of dollars in energy costs. The 5-year plan 
to implement the schedule outlines how DOE will address the appliance 
standards rulemaking backlog and meet the statutory requirements 
established in EPCA and the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPACT 2005). The 
5-year plan, which was developed considering the public comments 
received on the appliance standards program, provides for the issuance 
of one rulemaking for each of the 22 products in the backlog. The plan 
also provides for setting appliance standards for products required 
under EPACT 2005.
The overall plan for implementing the schedule is contained in the 
Report to Congress under section 141 of EPACT 2005 that was released on 
January 31, 2006. This plan was last updated in the August 2010 report 
to Congress and now includes the requirements of the Energy 
Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA 2007). The reports to 
Congress are posted at:
http://www.eere.energy.gov/appliance_standards/schedule_setting.html.
The August 2010 report identifies all products for which DOE has missed 
the deadlines established in EPCA (42 U.S.C. sec. 6291 et seq.). It 
also describes the reasons for such delays and the Department's plan 
for expeditiously prescribing new or amended standards. Information and 
timetables concerning these actions can also be found in the 
Department's regulatory agenda, which is posted online at: 
www.reginfo.gov.
Estimate of Combined Aggregate Costs and Benefits
The regulatory actions included in this regulatory plan for residential 
refrigerators and freezers, fluorescent lamp ballasts, residential 
central air conditioners and heat pumps, residential furnaces, 
manufactured housing, and clothes dryers and room air conditioners 
provide significant benefits to the Nation. DOE believes that the 
benefits to the Nation of the proposed energy standards for residential 
refrigerators and freezers (energy savings, consumer average life-cycle 
cost savings, national net present value increase, and emissions 
reductions) outweigh the costs (loss of industry net present value and 
life-cycle cost increases for some consumers). DOE estimates that these 
refrigerator and freezer regulations will produce an energy savings of 
4.5 quads over 30 years. The benefit to the Nation will be between 
$2.44 billion (7 percent discount rate) and $18.57 billion (3 percent 
discount rate). DOE believes that the proposed energy standards for 
fluorescent lamp ballasts, central air conditioners and heat pumps, 
residential furnaces, manufactured housing, and clothes dryers and room 
air conditioners will also be beneficial to the Nation. Because DOE has 
not yet proposed candidate standard levels for this equipment, however, 
DOE cannot provide an estimate of combined aggregate costs and benefits 
for these actions. DOE will, however, in compliance with all applicable 
law, issue standards that will provide the maximum energy savings that 
are technologically feasible and economically justified. Estimates of 
energy savings will be provided when DOE issues the notices of proposed 
rulemaking for this equipment.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EE)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

35. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR CLOTHES DRYERS AND ROOM AIR 
CONDITIONERS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


42 USC 6295(c) and (g)


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 430


Legal Deadline:


Final, Judicial, June 30, 2011.


Abstract:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act, as amended, establishes initial 
energy efficiency standard levels for many types of major residential 
appliances and generally requires DOE to undertake two subsequent 
rulemakings, at specified times, to determine whether the existing 
standard for a covered product should be amended. This is the second 
review of the standards for clothes dryers and room air conditioners.

[[Page 79513]]

Statement of Need:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires minimum energy 
efficiency standards for appliances, which has the effect of 
eliminating inefficient appliances from the market.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title III of EPCA sets forth a variety of provisions designed to 
improve energy efficiency. Part A of title III (42 U.S.C. 6291 to 6309) 
provides for the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products 
other than Automobiles. EPCA covers consumer products and certain 
commercial equipment, including clothes dryers and room are 
conditioners that are the subject of the rulemaking (42 U.S.C. 
6292(a)(2)-(8)). EPCA prescribes energy conservation standards for room 
air conditioners (42 U.S.C. 6295(c)) and directs DOE to conduct two 
cycles of rulemaking to determine whether to adopt amended standards 
(42 U.S.C. 6295(c)(3)(A)). For clothes dryers, EPCA sets a prescriptive 
requirement (42 U.S.C. 6294(g)(3)) and directs DOE to conduct a cycle 
of rulemaking to determine whether to adopt amended standards (42 
U.S.C. 6294(g)(4)). This rulemaking represents the second and first 
round of amendments to the standards for room air conditioners and 
dryers respectively.


Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct rulemakings to review standards and 
to revise standards to achieve the maximum improvement in energy 
efficiency that the Secretary determines is a technologically feasible 
and economically justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts 
a thorough analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the 
existing standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because DOE has not yet proposed candidate standard levels for these 
products, DOE cannot provide an estimate of combine aggregate costs and 
benefits for these actions. DOE will, however, in compliance with all 
applicable law, issue standards that provide the maximum energy savings 
that are technologically feasibly and economically justified. Estimates 
of energy savings will be provided when DOE issues the notices of 
proposed rulemaking for this equipment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Framework Document 
    Availability                10/09/07                    72 FR 57254
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Data Availability           02/23/10                     75 FR 7987
Comment Period End              04/26/10
NPRM                            03/00/11
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Additional Information:


This rulemaking is the second of two rulemakings required for this 
equipment. Comments pertaining to this rule may be submitted 
electronically to aham2-2008-TP-0010@hq.doe.gov.


URL For More Information:
www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings--standards/residential/clothes--
dryers.html

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Stephen Witkowski
Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 586-7463
Email: stephen.witkowski@ee.doe.gov
Related RIN: Merged with 1904-AB51, Related to 1904-AB76, Related to 
1904-AC02
RIN: 1904-AA89
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--EE

<###DOC>

36. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR RESIDENTIAL CENTRAL AIR 
CONDITIONERS AND HEAT PUMPS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


42 USC 6295(d)


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 430


Legal Deadline:


Final, Judicial, June 30, 2011.


Abstract:


DOE is reviewing and updating energy efficiency standards, as required 
by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, to reflect technological 
advances. All amended standards must be technologically feasible and 
economically justified. This is the second review of the statutory 
standards for residential central air conditioners and air conditioning 
heat pumps.


Statement of Need:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires minimum energy 
efficiency standards for appliances, which has the effect of 
eliminating inefficient appliances and equipment from the market.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title III of EPCA sets forth a variety of provisions designed to 
improve energy efficiency. Part A of title III (42 U.S.C. 6291 to 6309) 
provides for the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products 
other than Automobiles. Amendments expanded title III of EPCA to 
include certain commercial and industrial equipment. (42 U.S.C. 
6292(3)) The National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987 
(NAECA), Pub. L. 100--12, established energy conservation standards for 
central air conditioners and heat pumps as well as requirements for 
determining whether these standards should be amended. NAECA also 
required that DOE conduct two cycles of rulemakings to determine if 
more stringent standards are economically justified and technologically 
feasible. (42 U.S.C. 6295(d)(3)) On January 22, 2001, DOE published a 
final rule in the Federal Register, which completed the first 
rulemaking cycle to amend energy conservation standards for residential 
central air conditioners and heat pumps. 66 FR 7170. This rulemaking 
encompasses DOE's second cycle of review to determine whether the 
standards in effect for residential central air conditioners and heat 
pumps should be amended.

[[Page 79514]]

Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct rulemakings to review standards and 
to revise standards to achieve the maximum improvement in energy 
efficiency that the Secretary determines is technologically feasible 
and economically justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts 
a thorough analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the 
existing standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because DOE has not yet proposed candidate standard levels for this 
equipment, DOE cannot provide an estimate of combined aggregate costs 
and benefits for these actions. DOE will, however, in compliance with 
all applicable law, issue standards that provide the maximum energy 
savings that are technologically feasible and economically justified. 
Estimates of energy savings will be provided when DOE issues the 
notices of proposed rulemaking for this equipment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Framework Document 
    Availability                06/06/08                    73 FR 32243
Notice: Public Meetings, 
    Data Availability           03/25/10                    75 FR 14368
NPRM                            12/00/10
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Additional Information:


This rulemaking is the second of two rulemakings required for this 
equipment. Comments pertaining to this rule may be submitted 
electronically to Res_Central_AC_HP@ee.doe.gov.


URL For More Information:
www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance--standards/residential/
central--ac--hp.html

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Wes Anderson
Mechanical Engineer, Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 586-7335
Email: wes.anderson@ee.doe.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1904-AB94
RIN: 1904-AB47
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--EE

<###DOC>

37. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR FLUORESCENT LAMP BALLASTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


42 USC 6295(g)


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 430


Legal Deadline:


Final, Judicial, June 30, 2011.


Abstract:


DOE is reviewing and updating energy efficiency standards, as required 
by the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, to reflect technological 
advances. All amended energy efficiency standards must be 
technologically feasible and economically justified. This is the second 
review of the statutory standards for fluorescent lamp ballasts.


Statement of Need:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires minimum energy 
efficiency standards for appliances, which has the effect of 
eliminating inefficient appliances and equipment from the market.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) of 1975 (42 U.S.C. 6291 
to 6309) established an energy conservation program for major household 
appliances. Amendments to EPCA in the National Appliance Energy 
Conservation Amendments of 1988 (NAECA 1988) established energy 
conservation standards for fluorescent lamp ballasts. These amendments 
also required that DOE (1) conduct two rulemaking cycles to determine 
whether these standards should be amended and (2), for each rulemaking 
cycle, determine whether the standards in effect for fluorescent lamp 
ballasts should be amended to apply to additional fluorescent lamp 
ballasts. (42 U.S.C. 6295(g)(7)(A)--(B)). On September 19, 2000, DOE 
published a final rule in the Federal Register, which completed the 
first rulemaking cycle to amend energy conservation standards for 
fluorescent lamp ballasts. 65 FR 56740. This rulemaking encompasses 
DOE's second cycle of review to determine whether the standards in 
effect for fluorescent lamp ballasts should be amended and whether the 
standards should be applicable to additional fluorescent lamp ballasts.


Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct rulemakings to review standards and 
to revise standards to achieve the maximum improvement in energy 
efficiency that the Secretary determines is technologically feasible 
and economically justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts 
a thorough analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the 
existing standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because DOE has not yet proposed candidate standard levels for this 
equipment, however, DOE cannot provide an estimate of combined 
aggregate costs and benefits for these actions. DOE will, however, in 
compliance with all applicable law, issue standards that provide the 
maximum energy savings that are technologically feasible and 
economically justified. Estimates of energy savings will be provided 
when DOE issues the notices of proposed rulemaking for this equipment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Framework Document 
    Availability                01/22/08                     73 FR 3653
Notice: Public Meetings, 
    Data Availability           03/24/10                    75 FR 14319
NPRM                            12/00/10
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State

[[Page 79515]]

Federalism:


 Undetermined


Additional Information:


This rulemaking is the second of two rulemakings required for this 
equipment. Comments pertaining to this rule may be submitted 
electronically to ballasts.rulemaking@ee.doe.gov.


URL For More Information:
www1.eere.energy.gov/ buildings/appliance--standards/residential. 
fluorescent--lamp.ballasts.html

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Linda Graves
Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 586-1851
Email: linda.graves@ee.doe.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1904-AB77, Related to 1904-AA99
RIN: 1904-AB50
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--EE

<###DOC>

38. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR RESIDENTIAL FURNACES

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


42 USC 6295(f) and (m)


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 430


Legal Deadline:


Final, Judicial, June 30, 2011.


Abstract:


DOE published an energy conservation standard final rule for 
residential furnaces and boilers in the Federal Register on November 
19, 2007 (72 FR 65136). Petitioners challenged this final rule on 
several grounds. DOE filed a motion for voluntary remand to allow the 
agency to consider: 1) The application of regional standards in 
additional to national standards for furnaces, authorized by Energy 
Independence and Security Act of 2007 (enacted Dec. 19, 2007) and 2) 
the effect of alternative standards on natural gas prices. This motion 
for voluntary remand was granted on April 21, 2009. DOE has initiated 
this rulemaking to consider amended energy conservation standards for 
residential furnaces.


Statement of Need:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires minimum energy 
efficiency standards for appliances, which has the effect of 
eliminating inefficient appliances and equipment from the market.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title III of EPCA sets forth a variety of provisions designed to 
improve energy efficiency. Part A of title III (42 U.S.C. 6291 to 6309) 
provides for the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products 
other than Automobiles. The program covers certain commercial and 
industrial equipment, including residential furnaces. (42 U.S.C. 
6292(a)(5)) EPCA prescribed the initial energy conservation standards 
for residential furnaces. (42 U.S.C. 6295(f)(1)--(2)) The statute 
further provides DOE with the authority to conduct rulemakings to 
determine whether to amend these standards. (42 U.S.C. 6295(f)(4)).


Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct rulemakings to review standards and 
to revise standards to achieve the maximum improvement in energy 
efficiency that the Secretary determines is technologically feasible 
and economically justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts 
a thorough analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the 
existing standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because DOE has not yet proposed candidate standard levels for this 
equipment, DOE cannot provide an estimate of combined aggregate costs 
and benefits for these actions. DOE will, however, in compliance with 
all applicable law, issue standards that provide the maximum energy 
savings that are technologically feasible and economically justified. 
Estimates of energy savings will be provided when DOE issues the 
notices of proposed rulemaking for this equipment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Rulemaking Analysis 
    Plan Availability           03/15/10                    75 FR 12144
NPRM                            12/00/10
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


URL For More Information:
http://www1.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance--standards/residential/
furnaces--boilers.html

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Mohammed Khan
Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 586-7892
Email: mohammed.khan@ee.doe.gov
RIN: 1904-AC06
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--EE

<###DOC>

39. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR MANUFACTURED HOUSING

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


42 USC 17071


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 460


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, December 19, 2011.


Abstract:


The rule would establish energy efficiency standards for manufactured 
housing and a system to ensure compliance with, and enforcement of, the 
standards.

[[Page 79516]]

Statement of Need:


The Energy Independence and Security Act requires increased energy 
efficiency standards for manufactured housing.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 413 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA), 
42 U.S.C. 17071 directs DOE to develop and publish energy standards for 
manufactured housing.


Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct a rulemaking to establish standards 
to achieve the maximum improvement in energy efficiency that the 
Secretary determines is technologically feasible and economically 
justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts a thorough 
analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the existing 
standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Because DOE has not yet proposed candidate standard levels, DOE cannot 
provide an estimate of combined aggregate costs and benefits for these 
actions. DOE will, however, in compliance with all applicable law, 
issue standards that provide the increased energy savings that are 
technologically feasible and economically justified. Estimates of 
energy savings will be provided when DOE issues the notice of proposed 
rulemaking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           02/22/10                     75 FR 7556
ANPRM Comment Period End        03/24/10
NPRM                            04/00/11
Final Action                    12/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Jean J. Boulin
Project Manager, Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 586-9870
Email: jean.boulin@ee.doe.gov
RIN: 1904-AC11
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOE--EE

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

40. ENERGY EFFICIENCY STANDARDS FOR RESIDENTIAL REFRIGERATORS, 
REFRIGERATOR-FREEZERS, AND FREEZERS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


42 USC 6295(b)(4)


CFR Citation:


10 CFR 430


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, December 31, 2010.


Abstract:


The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 amended the Energy 
Policy and Conservation Act and directed the Secretary to issue a final 
rule to determine whether to amend the standards for refrigerators, 
refrigerator-freezers, and freezers. The final rule will contain any 
amended standards.


Statement of Need:


The Energy Policy and Conservation Act requires minimum energy 
efficiency standards for appliances, which has the effect of 
eliminating inefficient appliances and equipment from the market.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title III of EPCA sets forth a variety of provisions designed to 
improve energy efficiency. Part A of title III (42 U.S.C. 6291 to 6309) 
provides for the Energy Conservation Program for Consumer Products 
other than Automobiles. EPCA covers consumer products and certain 
commercial equipment, including the types of refrigeration products 
that are the subject of this rulemaking. (42 U.S.C. 6292(a)(1)) EPCA 
prescribes energy conservation standards for these products (42 U.S.C. 
6295(b)(1)-(2)) and directs DOE to conduct three cycles of rulemakings 
to determine whether to adopt amended standards. (42 U.S.C. 
6295(b)(3)(A)(i), (b)(3)(B)-(C), and (b)(4)) This rulemaking represents 
the third round of amendments to the standards for refrigeration 
products.


Alternatives:


The statute requires DOE to conduct rulemakings to review standards and 
to revise standards to achieve the maximum improvement in energy 
efficiency that the Secretary determines is technologically feasible 
and economically justified. In making this determination, DOE conducts 
a thorough analysis of the alternative standard levels, including the 
existing standard, based on the criteria specified by the statute


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


DOE believes that the benefits to the Nation of the proposed energy 
standards for residential refrigerators and freezers (energy savings, 
consumer average lifecycle cost (LCC) savings, national net present 
value (NPV) increase, and emission reductions) outweigh the burdens 
(loss of INPV and LCC increases for some small electric motor users). 
DOE estimates that energy savings from electricity will be 4.5 quads 
over 30 years and the benefit to the Nation will be between $2.56 
billion and $18.80 billion.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Framework Document 
    Availability                09/18/08                    73 FR 54089
Notice: Public Meeting, 
    Data Availability           11/16/09                    74 FR 58915
NPRM                            09/27/10                    75 FR 59470
NPRM Comment Period End         11/26/10
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State

[[Page 79517]]

Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Additional Information:


Comments pertaining to this rule may be submitted electronically to 
ResRefFreez-2008-STD-0012@hq.doe.gov.


URL For More Information:
www.eere.energy.gov/buildings/appliance_standards/residential/
refrigerators_freezer.html

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Subid Wagley
Office of Building Technologies Program, EE-2J
Department of Energy
Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
1000 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20585
Phone: 202 287-1414
Email: subid.wagley@ee.doe.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1904-AB92
RIN: 1904-AB79
BILLING CODE 6450-01-S

[[Page 79518]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES (HHS)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities for FY 2011
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is the Federal 
Government's principal agency charged with protecting the health of all 
Americans and providing essential human services. HHS' responsibilities 
include: Medicare, Medicaid, support for public health preparedness and 
emergency response, biomedical research, substance abuse and mental 
health treatment and prevention, assurance of safe and effective drugs 
and other medical products, protection of our Nation's food supply, 
assistance to low-income families, the Head Start program, services to 
older Americans, and direct health services delivery. Significantly, 
the Congress tasked HHS as the primary Department to implement the 
Affordable Care Act of 2010.
These programs constitute a substantial portion of the priorities of 
the Federal Government, and as such, the HHS budget represents almost a 
quarter of all Federal outlays, and the Department administers more 
grant dollars than all other agencies combined. Significantly, the 
Congress tasked HHS as the primary Department to implement the 
Affordable Care Act of 2010. The Department has met the statutory 
deadlines related to the key provisions of this law through the 
issuance of regulations, bulletins, and other guidance documents. The 
principle objective of the Department will continue to be 
implementation of the Affordable Care Act in a manner that promotes 
consumer protections, improves quality and safety, incentivizes more 
efficient care delivery, and slows the growth of health care costs. 
These policies reflect the Department's commitment to put consumers 
first, to provide stability in private insurance markets, and reform 
the health care delivery system.
Since assuming the leadership of HHS last year, Secretary Kathleen G. 
Sebelius has sought to prioritize efforts to promote early childhood 
health and development, help Americans achieve and maintain healthy 
weight, prevent and reduce tobacco use, protect the health and safety 
of Americans in public health emergencies, accelerate the process of 
scientific discovery to improve patient care, implement a 21st century 
food safety system, and ensure program integrity and responsible 
stewardship. Further, the Secretary has worked devotedly to enact 
meaningful reform of the country's health care system, and the 
Department has and will continue to focus considerable effort on 
implementation of the landmark health care reform bill passed by the 
Congress and signed into law by President Obama in March of 2010.
The Obama Administration has prioritized the use of rulemaking to 
promote open government and to identify regulatory approaches that 
maximize net benefits. HHS regulatory priorities in the upcoming fiscal 
year reflect these goals in two ways. First, they advance transparency 
through the use of disclosure as a regulatory tool. Second, they 
maximize the net benefits conferred on society by utilizing rigorous 
cost-benefit analyses in the development of regulations. Below is an 
overview of the Department's regulatory priorities for FY 2011 that 
best exemplify these objectives.
Promotion of Open Government
1. Transparency for Consumers Under the Affordable Care Act
Two regulations to be promulgated by the Department in FY 2011 will 
require that insurers submit certain information on how they pay claims 
and set their premiums. One of these regulations will require certain 
statistics and information on claims, rating processes, and cost 
sharing to be disclosed to the State and Federal Government, as well as 
to consumers. HHS estimates the benefits of this regulation to come 
from improved information for consumers and regulators, which will in 
turn result in a more efficient insurance market. Improved information 
for consumers will allow them to make better health insurance choices--
to choose higher quality insurers and ones that more closely match 
their preferences with respect to plan design. This could result in 
increased satisfaction and decreased morbidity. In addition, consumers 
may be more likely to choose insurers with more efficient processes, 
which could result in a reduction in administrative costs. Improved 
information for regulators will allow for monitoring of the markets to 
track current industry practices, which will allow for better 
enforcement of current market regulations through more targeted audits 
that are based upon insurer responses. Additionally, reporting 
requirements and the threat of targeted audits will likely influence 
issuer behavior to motivate compliance. It is not possible to quantify 
the benefits at this time. The direct costs imposed by the regulation 
are the reporting requirements. These requirements are still being 
developed, and will be quantified in the regulation.
The other regulation will ensure that all insurers use a uniform, 
easily understood format for accurate summaries of benefits and 
coverage explanations. Together, these two regulations will improve 
availability of meaningful information about health insurance to 
consumers, enabling them to better assess the coverage they currently 
have and/or make choices among different coverage options. HHS 
estimates the benefits of this regulation to come from improved 
information for consumers and regulators, which will in turn result in 
a more efficient insurance market. Improved information for consumers 
will allow them to make better health insurance choices--to choose 
higher quality insurers and ones that more closely match their 
preferences with respect to plan design. This could result in increased 
satisfaction and decreased morbidity. It is not possible to quantify 
the benefits at this time. The direct costs imposed by the regulation 
are the creation and provision of summary documents to consumers at the 
time of application, prior to enrollment and at reenrollment. There 
will also be costs imposed by the creation of the coverage facts label 
section of the summary documents. These requirements are still being 
developed and will be quantified in the regulation.
2. Public Health and Nutrition
Three rules to be promulgated by the FDA in the upcoming fiscal year 
will propose new labeling requirements aimed at better disclosing to 
the public critical information to enable them to make informed 
decisions about food and drugs that they choose to consume. One 
proposed rule will require color graphics on cigarette packages 
depicting the health consequences of smoking. The largest benefits of 
this proposed rule stem from increased life expectancies for 
individuals who are induced not to smoke. Other quantifiable benefits 
come from reductions in cases of non-fatal emphysema, reductions in 
fire losses, and reductions in medical expenditures. Unquantifiable 
benefits come from reductions in smokers' non-fatal illnesses other 
than emphysema, reductions in passive smoking, and reductions in infant 
and child health effects due to mothers' smoking during pregnancy. 
Large, one-time costs will arise from the need to change cigarette 
package labels and remove point-of-sale promotions that do not comply 
with the new advertising restrictions.

[[Page 79519]]

Additionally, there will be smaller ongoing FDA enforcement costs.
Two other key rules will implement provisions of the Affordable Care 
Act that require certain chain restaurants and vending machine 
operators to disclose nutritional information about their offerings. In 
the case of chain restaurants, these businesses will bear the cost of 
analysis of their menu items for nutritional information where this 
analysis does not already exist, and the cost of revising existing 
menus and other displays to note the required information. In the case 
of vending machines, the bulk of the costs associated with this rule 
will be in managing the actual disclosure of calories at the machine. 
Because almost all vending machines sell food that is previously 
manufactured and packaged, most vended foods are subject to the 
Nutrition Labeling and Education Act, which means that calorie content 
is already collected. The requirements of these rules, specifically 
that calorie and other nutrition information appear at the point of 
purchase, solves the apparent market failure in information provision 
stemming from present-biased preferences.
3. Enhanced Insurance Appeal and External Review Processes Under the 
            Affordable Care Act
With a goal of empowering patient consumers, the Affordable Care Act 
provides individuals with the right to appeal decisions made by their 
private health insurer to an outside, independent decisionmaker, 
regardless of consumers' State of residence or type of health 
insurance. One rule to be promulgated by the Department in FY 2011 will 
ensure that non-grandfathered plans and issuers comply with State or 
Federal external review processes. This rule will advance the 
Administration's objective of transparency by making certain that all 
consumers--regardless of whether their plan has grandfather status--are 
afforded an opportunity to appeal the decisions of their health carrier 
before an independent body. HHS estimates the benefits of the 
regulation to come from the transformation of the current, highly 
variable health claims and appeals process into a more uniform and 
structured process. This will result in a reduction in the incidence of 
excessive delays and inappropriate denials, averting serious, avoidable 
lapses in health care quality and resultant injuries and losses to 
participants; enhance enrollees' level of confidence in and 
satisfaction with their health care benefits and improve plans' 
awareness of participant concerns, prompting plan responses that 
improve quality; helping ensure prompt and precise adherence to 
contract terms and improving the flow of information between plans and 
enrollees to bolster the efficiency of labor, health care, and 
insurance markets. It is not possible to quantify these benefits at 
this time. The primary sources of costs are those required to 
administer and conduct the internal and external review process, 
prepare and distribute required disclosures and notices, and bring plan 
and issuers' internal and external claims and appeals procedures into 
compliance with the new requirements. In addition, there are start-up 
costs for issuers in the individual market to bring themselves into 
compliance and the costs and transfers associated with the reversal of 
denied claims. These costs are estimated to total $50.4 million in 
2011, $78.8 million in 2012, and $101.1 million in 2013.
4. Notification Requirements for Long-Term Care Facility Closures
A rule to be promulgated by CMS in the upcoming fiscal year will 
require that, in the case of a long-term care facility closure, the 
facility administrator provides written notification of closure and the 
plan for the relocation of residents at least 60 days prior to the 
impending closing. Such transparency will afford patients and family 
members a greater opportunity to meaningfully participate in decisions 
regarding relocation. The costs associated with the implementation of 
this rule are related to the efforts made by each facility to develop a 
plan for closure. The benefits would include the protection of 
residents' health and safety and a smooth transition for residents who 
need to be relocated, as well as their family members and facility 
staff.
In addition to the aforementioned rules, the Department's regulatory 
priorities in the upcoming fiscal year include:
Eliminating Insurance Company Abuses Under the Affordable Care Act
The Affordable Care Act made important changes that will improve the 
affordability and transparency of private health insurance in the 
United States. Specifically, the law calls for the annual State review 
of unreasonable increases in health insurance premiums, which will help 
protect consumers from unjustified and/or excessive premium increases. 
In developing a process for the review of rate increases, HHS will 
propose standards for when and how health insurance issuers will be 
required to report rate increases, as well as detail the relevant data 
and documentation that must be submitted in support of rate increases. 
The proposed rule will detail criteria for how determinations of 
unreasonableness will be made by HHS and also sets forth the conditions 
under which HHS will adopt unreasonableness determinations made by 
States. The rule will also propose standards for when and how health 
insurance issuers must provide justifications for rate increases 
determined to be unreasonable and when such justifications must be 
posted on the issuer's website. It will explain that HHS will post 
information regarding rate increases on its website to ensure the 
public disclosure of information on rate increases, including increases 
determined to be unreasonable. Finally, the proposed rule will address 
the development by HHS of annual summaries of data on rate trends.
The CLASS Act and Improving Long-Term Care
The Department will promulgate a significant rule in FY 2011 that will 
improve the quality of long-term care for affected Americans. 
Implementation of the CLASS (Community Living Assistance Services and 
Support) Act will provide a new opportunity for all Americans to 
prepare themselves financially to remain independent under a variety of 
future health circumstances as they age. While this program may help 
reduce spending down to Medicaid, costs to implement the proposed 
regulation have not yet been estimated.
Food Safety
The Department is committed to improvements in our food safety system 
guided in part by the findings of the President's Food Safety Working 
Group, which adopted a public-health approach based on three core 
principles: Prioritizing prevention, strengthening surveillance and 
enforcement, and improving response and recovery if prevention fails. 
The goal of this new agenda is to shift emphasis away from mitigating 
public health harm by removing unsafe products from the market place to 
a new overriding objective--preventing harm by keeping unsafe food from 
entering commerce in the first place. As such, an FDA regulation will 
aim squarely at protecting the youngest and most vulnerable Americans 
by finalizing a modernization of existing requirements

[[Page 79520]]

on current good manufacturing practices for infant formula.
Streamlining Drug and Device Requirements
Two Food and Drug Administration (FDA) final rules will standardize the 
electronic submission of registrations and listings for devices, data 
from studies evaluating drugs and biologics for humans, and data on 
adverse events involving medical devices. Standardization of clinical 
data structure, terminology, and code sets will increase the efficiency 
of the Agency review process. FDA estimates that the costs resulting 
from the proposal would include substantial one-time costs, additional 
waves of one-time costs as standards mature, and possibly some annual 
recurring costs. One-time costs would include, among other things, the 
cost of converting data to standard structures, terminology, and cost 
sets (i.e., purchase of software to convert data); the cost of 
submitting electronic data (i.e., purchase of file transfer programs); 
and the cost of installing and validating the software and training 
personnel. Additional annual recurring costs may result from software 
purchases and licensing agreements for use of proprietary 
terminologies. The proposal could result in many long-term benefits 
associated with reduced time for preparing applications, including 
reduced preparation costs and faster time to market for beneficial 
products. In addition, the proposed rule would improve patient safety 
through faster, more efficient, comprehensive, and accurate data 
review, as well as enhanced communication among sponsors and 
clinicians.
Additionally, a new proposed rule will establish a unique 
identification system that will identify a device through distribution 
and use. FDA estimates that the affected industry would incur one-time 
and recurring costs, including administrative costs, to change and 
print labels that include the required elements of a unique device 
identifier (UDI), costs to purchase equipment to print and verify the 
UDI, and costs to purchase software, integrate and validate the UDI 
into existing IT systems. Certain entities would be required to submit 
information about each UDI and the relevant medical device into a 
database. FDA anticipates that implementation of a UDI system would 
help improve the efficiency of recalled medical devices and medical 
device adverse event reporting. The proposed rule would also 
standardize how medical devices are identified and contribute to future 
potential public health benefits of initiatives aimed at optimizing the 
use of automated systems in healthcare. Most of these benefits, 
however, require complementary developments and innovations in the 
private and public sectors. Together, these rules will enable the FDA 
to more quickly and efficiently process and review information 
submitted on devices, drugs, and biologics, furthering their ability to 
both better protect the public safety and more rapidly advance 
innovations to the market.
Medicare Modernization
The Regulatory Plan highlights three final rules that would adjust 
payment amounts under Medicare for physicians' services, hospital 
inpatient, and hospital outpatient services for fiscal year 2012. These 
new payment rules reflect continuing experience with regulating these 
systems and will implement modernizations to ensure that the Medicare 
program best serves its beneficiaries, fairly compensates providers, 
and remains fiscally sound. Additionally, another rule promulgated 
under the Affordable Care Act will propose a Medicare shared savings 
program for provider groups to establish Accountable Care Organizations 
and share in savings generated for Medicare by meeting certain 
benchmarks.
Health Information Technology
The Department will issue a rule that will modify the existing HIPAA 
privacy and security enforcement regulations to comply with the 
provisions of the HITECH Act. This rule will ensure that Americans can 
be confident that their medical data is kept private as the country 
increasingly moves to electronic health records. These modifications to 
the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Enforcement Rules will benefit health 
care consumers by strengthening the privacy and security protections 
afforded their health information by HIPAA covered entities and their 
business associates. The Agency believes the primary cost associated 
with this regulation will be for covered entities to revise and 
redistribute their notices of privacy practices to ensure health care 
consumers are informed of their new rights and protections. The Agency 
estimates the cost of revising and redistributing these notices to 
total approximately $166.1 million over the first year following the 
effective date of the regulation. Of this total, the cost to health 
care providers is estimated to be approximately $46 million and to 
health plans to be approximately $120.1 million. The Agency does not 
believe that the additional modifications to the Privacy, Security, or 
Enforcement Rules required by this regulation will significantly 
increase covered entity or business associate costs. It is estimated 
that the changes to the HIPAA authorization and access requirements 
will impose little to no additional costs on covered entities and their 
business associates, and in some cases will reduce burden. Further, it 
is expected that the costs of modifying business associate contracts 
will be mitigated both by the additional one-year transition period 
which will allow the costs of modifying contracts to be incorporated 
into the normal renegotiation of contracts as the contracts expire, as 
well as sample business associate contract language to be provided by 
the Agency.
Head Start Program Integrity
The Department will finalize a rule in FY 2011 that will implement 
statutory requirements requiring a re-evaluation of Head Start grantees 
every 5 years to ensure that taxpayer dollars are spent in the most 
effective possible manner by this critical program. The Administration 
on Children and Families estimates the costs of implementing the new 
reporting requirements described in the rule will be approximately 
$20,000 annually. In addition, at least 25 percent of grantees reviewed 
in a year will be required to submit a competitive application for a 
new 5-year grant, at an estimated cost of less than $1,500 for each 
grantee. In terms of benefits, the proposed system will fund only high-
performing grantees in order to ensure the best services for Head Start 
children are provided and child outcomes are improved.
Small Business Impact
Finally, HHS actively seeks to minimize regulatory burdens on small 
business. Over 95 per cent of the entities that we regulate - 
hospitals, doctors' practices, social service providers, medical device 
firms, universities and many others - qualify as ``small entities'' 
under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA). All of the aforementioned 
actions have been developed in light of and with serious consideration 
of the small-business impact analysis.

[[Page 79521]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Office of the Secretary (OS)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

41. MODIFICATIONS TO THE HIPAA PRIVACY, SECURITY, AND ENFORCEMENT RULES 
UNDER THE HEALTH INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY FOR ECONOMIC AND CLINICAL 
HEALTH ACT

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


PL 111-5, secs 13400 to 13410


CFR Citation:


45 CFR 160; 45 CFR 164


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, February 17, 2010.


Abstract:


The Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights 
will issue rules to modify the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Enforcement 
Rules as necessary to implement the privacy, security, and certain 
enforcement provisions of subtitle D of the Health Information 
Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (title XIII of the 
American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009).


Statement of Need:


The Office for Civil Rights will issue rules to modify the HIPAA 
Privacy, Security, and Enforcement Rules to implement the privacy and 
security provisions in sections 13400 to 13410 of the Health 
Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (title XIII 
of Division A of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, 
Pub. L. 111-5). These regulations will improve the privacy and security 
protection of health information.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Subtitle D of the Health Information Technology for Economic and 
Clinical Health Act (title XIII of the American Recovery and 
Reinvestment Act of 2009) requires the Office for Civil Rights to 
modify certain provisions of the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules to 
implement sections 13400 to 13410 of the Act.


Alternatives:


The Office for Civil Rights is statutorily mandated to make 
modifications to the HIPAA Privacy and Security Rules to implement the 
privacy provisions at sections 13400 to 13410 of the Health Information 
Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act (title XIII of the 
American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009).


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


These modifications to the HIPAA Privacy, Security, and Enforcement 
Rules will benefit health care consumers by strengthening the privacy 
and security protections afforded their health information by HIPAA 
covered entities and their business associated. The Agency believe the 
primary cost associate with this regulation will be for covered 
entities to revise and redistribute their notices of privacy practices 
to ensure health care consumers are informed of their new rights and 
protections. The Agency estimates the cost of revising and 
redistributing these notices to total approximates $166.1 million over 
the first year following the effective date of the regulation. Of this 
total, the cost heal care providers is estimated to be approximately 
$46 million and to health plans to be approximately $120.1 million. The 
Agency does not believe that the additional modification to Privacy, 
Security, or Enforcement Rules required by this regulation will 
significantly increase covered entity or business associates and in 
some cases will reduce burden. Further, it is expected that the costs 
of modifying business associate contracts will be mitigated both by the 
additional one-year transition period which will allow the costs of 
modifying contracts to be incorporated into the normal renegotiation of 
contracts as the contracts expire, as well as sample business associate 
contract language to be provided by the Agency.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State, Tribal


Agency Contact:
Andra Wicks
Department of Health and Human Services
200 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20201
Phone: 202 205-2292
Fax: 202 205-4786
Email: andra.wicks@hhs.gov
RIN: 0991-AB57
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (OCIIO)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

42.  TRANSPARENCY REPORTING

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148, title I, subtitle A, sec 1001 PHS Act, sec 2715A


CFR Citation:


45 CFR 153, Insurance Rules (sec 2715A)


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Affordable Care Act requires group health plans and health 
insurance issuers to submit specific information to the Secretary, the 
State insurance commissioner, and to make the information available to 
the public. This includes information on claims payment policies, the 
number of claims denied, data on rating practices and other information 
as determined by the Secretary. The provision also requires plans and 
issuers to provide to individuals upon request the amount of cost 
sharing that the individual would be responsible for paying for a 
specific item or service provided by a participating provider. This 
interim final rule would implement information disclosure provisions in 
section 2715A of the Public Health Service Act, as added by the 
Affordable Care Act.


Statement of Need:


The Department of Health and Human Services, along with the Department 
of Labor and the Treasury Department, will issue interim final rules to 
implement the information disclosure

[[Page 79522]]

provisions in section 2715A of the Public Health Service Act, as added 
by the Affordable Care Act. This regulation will improve the 
transparency of information about how health coverage works so 
consumers will have better information to use and assess the coverage 
they have now, and/or make choices among different coverage options.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title I, subtitle A, section 1001 of the Affordable Care Act adds 
section 2715A to the Public Health Service Act that will require group 
health plans and health insurance issuers to make certain disclosures 
to the Secretary, the State insurance commissioner, the public, and in 
some cases, individuals.


Alternatives:


None--statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


HHS estimates the benefits of this regulation to come from improved 
information for consumers and regulators, which will in tern result in 
a more efficient insurance market. Improved information for consumers 
will allow them to make better health insurance choices -- to choose 
higher quality insurers and ones that more closely match their 
preferences with respect to plan design. This could result in increased 
satisfaction and decreased morbidity. In addition, consumers may be 
more likely to choose insurers with more efficient processes, which 
could result in a reduction in administrative costs. Improved 
information for regulators will allow for monitoring of the markets to 
track current industry practices, which will allow for better 
enforcement of current market regulations through more targeted audits 
that are based upon insurer responses. Additionally, reporting 
requirements and the threat of targeted audit will likely influence 
issuer behavior to motivate compliance. I is not possible to quantify 
the benefits at this time.


The direct costs imposed by the regulation are reporting requirements. 
These requirements are still being developed, and will be quantified in 
the regulation.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Kaye L. Pestaina
Office of Consumer Support
Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight
200 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20201
Phone: 301 492-4227
Email: kaye.pestaina@hhs.gov
RIN: 0950-AA07
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--OCIIO

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

43.  RATE REVIEW

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148


CFR Citation:


45 CFR 154


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Affordable Care Act requires the Secretary to work with states to 
establish an annual review of unreasonable rate increases, to monitor 
premium increases and to award grants to states to carry out their rate 
review process. This interim final rule would implement the rate review 
process.


Statement of Need:


The Affordable Care Act requires standards to be set for the review of 
rate increases. The proposed rule will detail standards for when and 
how health insurance issuers will be required to report rate increases, 
as well as detail the relevant data and documentation that must be 
submitted in support of the rate increases. The proposed rule will 
detail criteria for how determinations of unreasonableness will be made 
by HHS, and also sets forth the conditions under which HHS will adopt 
unreasonableness determinations made by States. This regulation is part 
of the health insurance market reform and will increase affordability 
of health insurance for all Americans.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Affordable Care Act.


Alternatives:


There are no alternatives, as this rulemaking is a matter of law based 
on the Affordable Care Act.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


HHS expects that costs associated with this rulemaking will be minimal 
as insurers routinely report to States on rate increases. Insurers may 
experience slight additional costs in connection with completion of 
policy rate data collection forms and any necessary submission of 
justification forms for rates that trigger unreasonable designations. 
The benefits of these requirements include increased consumer 
protections around unsubstantiated premium rate increases, reduced 
health insurance rate increases, increased transparency and consumer 
confidence in the products they buy, and ensuring financially solvent 
companies that can pay promised benefits.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              07/03/10                    75 FR 45014
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          09/28/10
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
James Mayhew
Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight
Mail Stop C2-12016
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-9244
Email: james.mayhew@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0950-AA03

[[Page 79523]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--OCIIO

<###DOC>

44.  UNIFORM EXPLANATION OF BENEFITS, COVERAGE FACTS, AND 
STANDARDIZED DEFINITIONS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148, title I, subtitle A, sec 1001 (Public Health Service Act, 
sec 2715)


CFR Citation:


45 CFR 153, Insurance Rules (sec 2715)


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Affordable Care Act requires the Secretary to develop standards for 
use by group health plans and health insurance issuers in compiling and 
providing a summary of benefits and coverage explanation that 
accurately describes benefits and coverage. The Secretary must also set 
standards for the definitions of terms used in health insurance 
coverage, including specific terms set out in the statute. Plans and 
issuers must provide information according to these standards no later 
than 24 months after enactment. This interim final rule would implement 
the information disclosure provisions in section 2715 of PHSA , as 
added by the Affordable Care Act.


Statement of Need:


The Department of Health and Human Services, along with the Departments 
of Labor and the Treasury, will issue interim final rules to implement 
the information disclosure provisions in section 2715 of PHSA, as added 
by the Affordable Care Act. This regulation will provide consumers with 
a simplified and uniform overview of their benefits, specific 
``Coverage Facts'' or scenarios for the costs of coverage for specific 
episodes of care, and standardized consumer-friendly health coverage 
definitions. This will allow consumers to better understand the 
coverage that they have and allow consumers choosing coverage to better 
compare coverage options.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Title I, subtitle A, section 1001, of the Affordable Care Act adds 
section 2715 to the Public Health Service Act that will require group 
health plans and health insurance issuers to provide a summary of 
benefits and coverage explanations and standardized definitions to 
applicants, enrollees, and policyholders.


Alternatives:


None--statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


HHS estimates the benefits of this regulation to come from improved 
information for consumers and regulators, which will in turn result in 
a more efficient insurance market. Improved information for consumers 
will allow them to make better health insurance choices--to chose 
higher quality insurers and ones that more closely match their 
preference with respect to plan design. This could result in increased 
satisfaction and decreased morbidity. It is not possible to quantify 
the benefits at this time.


The direct costs imposed by the regulation are the creation and 
provision of summary documents to consumers at the time of application, 
prior to enrollment and at re-enrollment. There will also be costs 
imposed by the creation of the coverage facts label section of the 
summary documents. These requirements are still being developed and 
will be quantified in the regulation.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Kaye L. Pestaina
Office of Consumer Support
Department of Health and Human Services
Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight
200 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20201
Phone: 301 492-4227
Email: kaye.pestaina@hhs.gov
RIN: 0950-AA08
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

45. ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION OF DATA FROM STUDIES EVALUATING HUMAN DRUGS 
AND BIOLOGICS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 355; 21 USC 371; 42 USC 262


CFR Citation:


21 CFR 314.50; 21 CFR 601.12; 21 CFR 314.94; 21 CFR 314.96


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration is proposing to amend the regulations 
governing the format in which clinical study data and bioequivalence 
data are required to be submitted for new drug applications (NDAs), 
biological license applications (BLAs), and abbreviated new drug 
applications (ANDAs). The proposal would revise our regulations to 
require that data submitted for NDAs, BLAs, and ANDAs, and their 
supplements and amendments, be provided in an electronic format that 
FDA can process, review, and archive.


Statement of Need:


Before a drug is approved for marketing, FDA must determine that the 
drug is safe and effective for its intended use. This determination is 
based in part on clinical study data and bioequivalence data that are 
submitted as part of the marketing application. Study data submitted to 
FDA in electronic format have generally been more efficient to process 
and review.


FDA's proposed rule would address the submission of study data in a 
standardized electronic format. Electronic submission of study data 
would improve patient safety and enhance health care delivery by 
enabling FDA to process, review, and archive data more efficiently. 
Standardization would also enhance the ability to share study data and 
communicate results. Investigators and industry would benefit from the 
use of

[[Page 79524]]

standards throughout the lifecycle of a study--in data collection, 
reporting, and analysis. The proposal would work in concert with 
ongoing Agency and national initiatives to support increased use of 
electronic technology as a means to improve patient safety and enhance 
health care delivery.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Our legal authority to amend our regulations governing the submission 
and format of clinical study data and bioequivalence data for human 
drugs and biologics derives from sections 505 and 701 of the Act 
(U.S.C. 355 and 371) and section 351 of the Public Health Service Act 
(42 U.S.C. 262).


Alternatives:


FDA considered issuing a guidance document outlining the electronic 
submission and the standardization of study data, but not requiring 
electronic submission of the data in the standardized format. This 
alternative was rejected because the Agency would not fully benefit 
from standardization until it became the industry standard, which could 
take up to 20 years.


We also considered a number of different implementation scenarios, from 
shorter to longer time-periods. The 2-year time-period was selected 
because the Agency believes it would provide ample time for applicants 
to comply without too long a delay in the effective date. A longer 
time-period would delay the benefit from the increased efficiencies, 
such as standardization of review tools across applications, and the 
incremental cost savings to industry would be small.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Standardization of clinical data structure, terminology, and code sets 
will increase the efficiency of the Agency review process. FDA 
estimates that the costs resulting from the proposal would include 
substantial one-time costs, additional waves of one-time costs as 
standards mature, and possibly some annual recurring costs. One-time 
costs would include, among other things, the cost of converting data to 
standard structures, terminology, and cost sets (i.e., purchase of 
software to convert data); the cost of submitting electronic data 
(i.e., purchase of file transfer programs); and the cost of installing 
and validating the software and training personnel. Additional annual 
recurring costs may result from software purchases and licensing 
agreements for use of proprietary terminologies. The proposal could 
result in many long-term benefits associated with reduced time for 
preparing applications, including reduced preparation costs and faster 
time to market for beneficial products. In addition, the proposed rule 
would improve patient safety through faster, more efficient, 
comprehensive and accurate data review, as well as enhanced 
communication among sponsors and clinicians.


Risks:


None.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Martha Nguyen
Regulatory Counsel
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Drug Evaluation and Research
WO 51, Room 6352
10903 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20993-0002
Phone: 301 796-3471
Fax: 301 847-8440
Email: martha.nguyen@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AC52
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

46. UNIQUE DEVICE IDENTIFICATION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


15 USC 1451 to 1461; 21 USC 141 to 149, 321 to 394, 467f, 679, 821, 
1034; 28 USC 2112; 42 USC 201 to 262, 263a and 263b, 264, 271, 364


CFR Citation:


21 CFR 16, 801, 803, 806, 810, 814, 820, 821,


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration Amendments Act of 2007, amended the 
Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by adding section 519(f) (21 
U.S.C. 360i(f)). This section requires FDA to promulgate regulations 
establishing a unique identification system for medical devices 
requiring the label of medical devices to bear a unique identifier, 
unless FDA specifies an alternative placement or provides for 
exceptions. The unique identifier must adequately identify the device 
through distribution and use, and may include information on the lot or 
serial number.


Statement of Need:


A unique device identification system will help reduce medical errors; 
will allow FDA, the healthcare community, and industry to more rapidly 
review and organize adverse event reports; identify problems relating 
to a particular device (even down to a particular lot or batch, range 
of serial numbers, or range of manufacturing or expiration dates); and 
thereby allow for more rapid, effective, corrective actions that focus 
sharply on the specific devices that are of concern.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This rule is provided for/mandated by FDAAA. Section 519(f) of the FD&C 
Act (added by sec. 226 of the Food and Drug Administration Amendments 
Act of 2007) directs the Secretary to promulgate regulations 
establishing a unique device identification (UDI) system for medical 
devices, requiring the label of devices to bear a unique identifier 
that will adequately identify the device through its distribution and 
use.


Alternatives:


FDA considered several alternatives that allow certain requirements of 
the proposed rule to vary, such as the required elements of a UDI and 
the scope of affected devices.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FDA estimates that the affected industry would incur one-time and 
recurring costs, including administrative costs, to change and print 
labels that include the required elements of a UDI, costs to purchase 
equipment to print and verify the UDI, and costs to purchase software, 
integrate and validate the UDI into existing IT systems. Certain 
entities would be required to submit information about each UDI and the 
relevant medical device into a database, FDA would incur costs to 
develop,

[[Page 79525]]

implement, and administer a database that would serve as a repository 
of information to facilitate the identification of medical devices 
through their distribution and use. FDA anticipates that implementation 
of a UDI system would help improve the efficiency of recalled medical 
devices and medical device adverse event reporting. The proposed rule 
would also standardize how medical devices are identified and 
contribute to future potential public health benefits of initiatives 
aimed at optimizing the use of automated systems in healthcare. Most of 
these benefits, however, require complementary developments and 
innovations in the private and public sectors.


Risks:


This rule is intended to substantially eliminate existing obstacles to 
the adequate identification of medical devices used in the Unites 
States. By providing the means to rapidly and definitely identify a 
device and key attributes that affect its safe and effective use, the 
rule would reduce medical errors that result from misidentification of 
a device or confusion concerning its appropriate use. The rule will 
fulfill a statutory directive to establish a unique device 
identification system.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
John J. Crowley
Senior Advisor for Patient Safety
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Devices and Radiological Health
WO 66, Room 2315
10903 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20993
Phone: 301 980-1936
Email: jay.crowley@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AG31
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

47. CIGARETTE WARNING LABEL STATEMENTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


PL 111-31, The Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, sec 
201


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, June 22, 2011.


Section 4 of the Federal Cigarette Labeling and Advertising Act 
(FCLAA), as amended by section 201 of the Family Smoking Prevention and 
Tobacco Control Act (the Tobacco Control Act), requires FDA to issue 
regulations no later than 24 months after the date of enactment of the 
Tobacco Control Act that require color graphics depicting the negative 
health consequences of smoking.


Abstract:


Section 4 of the FCLAA, as amended by section 201 of the Tobacco 
Control Act, requires FDA to issue regulations that require color 
graphics depicting the negative health consequences of smoking to 
accompany required warning statements. FDA also may adjust the type 
size, text and format of the required label statements on product 
packaging and advertising if FDA determines that it is appropriate so 
that both the graphics and the accompanying label statements are clear, 
conspicuous, legible and appear within the specified area.


Statement of Need:


This proposed rule is necessary to amend FDA's regulations to add a new 
requirement for the display of health warnings on cigarette packages 
and in cigarette advertisements and to specify the color graphics that 
must accompany each textual warning statement.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The proposed rule would implement a provision of the Tobacco Control 
Act that requires FDA to issue regulations requiring color graphics 
depicting the negative health consequences of smoking to accompany the 
nine new textual warning statements that will be required under the 
Tobacco Control Act. The Tobacco Control Act amends the FCLAA to 
require each cigarette package and advertisement to bear one of nine 
new textual warning statements.


Alternatives:


The Agency will compare the proposed rule to two hypothetical 
alternatives: An otherwise identical rule with a 24-month compliance 
period and an otherwise identical rule with a 6-month compliance 
period. Although we will compare the rule to two hypothetical 
alternatives, they are not viable regulatory options as they are 
inconsistent with FDA's statutory mandate.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The largest benefits of this proposed rule stem from increased life 
expectancies for individuals who are induced not to smoke. Other 
quantifiable benefits come from reductions in cases of non-fatal 
emphysema, reductions in fire losses, and reductions in medical 
expenditures. Unquantifiable benefits come from reductions in smokers' 
non-fatal illnesses other than emphysema, reductions in passive 
smoking, and reductions in infant and child health effects due to 
mothers' smoking during pregnancy.Large, one-time costs will arise from 
the need to change cigarette package labels and remove point-of-sale 
promotions that do not comply with the new advertising restrictions. 
Additionally, there will be smaller ongoing FDA enforcement costs.


Risks:


This proposed rule would reduce the risk to the public by helping to 
clearly and effectively convey the negative health consequences of 
smoking on cigarette packages and in cigarette advertisements, which 
would help both to discourage non-smokers, including minor children, 
from initiating cigarette

[[Page 79526]]

use and to encourage current smokers to consider cessation.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            11/12/10                    75 FR 69524
NPRM Comment Period End         01/11/11
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Gerie Voss
Regulatory Counsel
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
9200 Corporate Boulevard
Rockville, MD 20850
Phone: 877 287-1373
Fax: 240 276-4193
Email: gerie.voss@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AG41
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

48.  FOOD LABELING: NUTRITION LABELING FOR FOOD SOLD IN VENDING 
MACHINES

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


21 USC 343; 21 USC 371


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, March 23, 2011, Proposed rule to be published 1 year 
after enactment.


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing regulations to 
establish requirements for nutrition labeling of food sold in vending 
machines. FDA is also proposing the terms and conditions for 
registering to voluntarily be subject to the requirements of section 
4205. FDA is taking this action to carry out the provisions of section 
4205 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (``Affordable 
Care Act'' or ``ACA''), which was signed into law on March 23, 2010.


Statement of Need:


This proposed rule was mandated by section 4205 of the Affordable Care 
Act.


Summary of Legal Basis:


On March 23, 2010, the Affordable Care Act (Pub. L. 111-148) was signed 
into law. Section 4205 amended 403(q)(5) of the Federal Food, Drug, and 
Cosmetic Act by creating new clause (H) to require that vending machine 
operators, who own or operate 20 or more machines, disclose calories 
for food items. FDA has the authority to issue this proposed rule under 
section 403(q)(5)(H) and 701(a) (21 U.S.C. 343(q)(5)(H), and 371(a)). 
Section 701(a) of the act vests the Secretary (and, by delegation, the 
FDA) with the authority to issue regulations for the efficient 
enforcement of the act.


Alternatives:


Section 4205 requires the Secretary (and, by delegation, the FDA) to 
establish, by regulation, requirements for calorie disclosure of food 
items for vending machine operators, who own or operate 20 or more 
machines. Therefore, there are no alternatives to rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The bulk of the costs associated with this rule will be in managing the 
actual disclosure of calories at the machine. Since almost all vending 
machines sell food that is previously manufactured and packaged, most 
vended foods are subject to the Nutrition Labeling Education Act, which 
means that calorie content is already collected. A likely scenario for 
response to vending machine labeling is that food manufacturers include 
a set of calorie label stickers in each case of product.


Since consumers of vended foods do not generally have access to 
nutrition information prior to purchase, requiring that operators make 
that information available should benefit consumers. Consumers may 
ignore future costs of overeating, relative to the current gains from 
eating, even when they understand the connection. Therefore, consumers 
do not generally demand calorie and other nutrition information for 
food away from home, even when they do, given a wider frame of 
reference, value that information. Given the costs and the uncertain 
reception for calorie information that many consumers appear not to 
care about, most vending machine operators have chosen not to display 
calorie information. The requirements of the proposed rule, 
specifically, that calorie and other nutrition information appear at 
the point of purchase, solves the apparent market failure in providing 
information provision stemming from present-biased preferences.


Risks:


For some vending machine foods, consumers cannot view the nutrition 
facts panel or otherwise see nutrition information prior to purchasing 
the item. Completion of this rulemaking will provide consumers 
information about the nutritional content of food to empower them to 
make healthier food choices from vending machines.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Geraldine A. June
Supervisor, Product Evaluation and Labeling Team
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
(HFS-820)
5100 Paint Branch Parkway
College Park, MD 20740
Phone: 301 436-1802
Fax: 301 436-2636
Email: geraldine.june@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AG56

[[Page 79527]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

49.  FOOD LABELING: NUTRITION LABELING OF STANDARD MENU ITEMS 
IN CHAIN RESTAURANTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


21 USC 343; 21 USC 371


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, March 23, 2011, Proposed rule to be published 1 year 
after enactment.


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is proposing regulations to 
establish requirements for nutrition labeling of standard menu items 
for chain restaurants and similar retail food establishments. FDA is 
also proposing the terms and conditions for registering to voluntarily 
be subject to the requirements of section 4205. FDA is taking this 
action to carry out the provisions of section 4205 of the Patient 
Protection and Affordable Care Act (``Affordable Care Act'' or 
``ACA''), which was signed into law on March 23, 2010.


Statement of Need:


This proposed rule was mandated by section 4205 of the Affordable Care 
Act.


Summary of Legal Basis:


On March 23, 2010, the Affordable Care Act (Pub. L. 111-148) was signed 
into law. Section 4205 amended 403(q)(5) of the Federal Food, Drug, and 
Cosmetic Act by creating new clause (H) to require that chain 
restaurants, with 20 or more locations, require certain nutrient 
disclosure. Specifically, section 4205 required the Secretary of Health 
and Human Services to issue a proposed regulation to carry out clause 
(H) of the ACA no later than 1 year of enactment of this clause (i.e., 
Mar. 23, 2011). FDA has the authority to issue this proposed rule under 
section 403(q)(5)(H) and 701(a) (21 U.S.C. 343(q)(5)(H), and 371(a)). 
Section 701(a) of the act vests the Secretary (and, by delegation, the 
FDA) with the authority to issue regulations for the efficient 
enforcement of the act.


As directed by section 4205, FDA is proposing requirements for menu 
calorie declaration, as well as other nutrition information declaration 
to implement the provisions of 403(q)(5)(H). FDA is also proposing the 
terms and conditions for registering to voluntarily be subject to the 
requirements of section 4205.


Alternatives:


Section 4205 requires the Secretary (and, by delegation, the FDA) to 
establish, by regulation, requirements for nutrition labeling of 
standard menu items for chain restaurants and similar retail food 
establishments. Therefore, there are no alternatives to rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Chain restaurants operating in local jurisdictions that impose 
different nutrition labeling requirements will benefit from having a 
uniform national standard. Any restaurant, with fewer than 20 
locations, may opt in to the national standard to receive this benefit. 
Many chain restaurants, with 20 or more locations, will bear costs for 
adding nutrition information to menus and menu boards. Consumers will 
benefit from having important nutrition information for the 
approximately 30 per cent of calories consumed away from home.


Risks:


Americans now consume an estimated one-third of their total calories on 
foods prepared outside the home and spend almost half of their food 
dollars on such foods. Unlike packaged foods that are labeled with 
nutrition information, foods in restaurants, for the most part, do not 
have nutrition information. Completion of this rulemaking will provide 
consumers information about the nutritional content of food to empower 
them to make healthier food choices.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Geraldine A. June
Supervisor, Product Evaluation and Labeling Team
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition
(HFS-820)
5100 Paint Branch Parkway
College Park, MD 20740
Phone: 301 436-1802
Fax: 301 436-2636
Email: geraldine.june@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AG57
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

50. INFANT FORMULA: CURRENT GOOD MANUFACTURING PRACTICES; QUALITY 
CONTROL PROCEDURES; NOTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS; RECORDS AND REPORTS; AND 
QUALITY FACTORS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


21 USC 321; 21 USC 350a; 21 USC 371; . . .


CFR Citation:


21 CFR 106 and 107


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is revising its infant formula 
regulations in 21 CFR parts 106 and 107 to establish requirements for 
current good manufacturing practices (CGMP), including audits; to 
establish requirements for quality factors; and to amend FDA's quality 
control procedures, notification, and record and reporting requirements 
for infant formula. FDA is taking this action to improve the protection 
of infants who consume infant formula products.


Statement of Need:


The agency published a proposed rule on July 9, 1996, that would 
establish current good manufacturing practice regulations, quality 
control procedures, quality factors, notification requirements, records 
and reports for the production of infant formula. This proposal was 
issued in response to the

[[Page 79528]]

1986 Amendments to the Infant Formula Act of 1980. On April 28, 2003, 
FDA reopened the comment period to update comments on the proposal. The 
comment was extended on June 27, 2003 and ended on August 26, 2003. The 
comment period was reopened on August 1, 2006 and ended on September 
15, 2006.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Infant Formula Act of 1980 (the 1980 Act) (Pub. L. 96-359) amended 
the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the Act) to include section 
412 (21 U.S.C. 350a). This law is intended to improve protection of 
infants consuming infant formula products by establishing greater 
regulatory control over the formulation and production of infant 
formula. In 1982, FDA adopted infant formula recall procedures in 
subpart D of 21 CFR part 107 of its regulations (47 FR 18832, Apr. 30, 
1982), and infant formula quality control procedures in subpart B of 21 
CFR part 106 (47 FR 17016, Apr. 20, 1982). In 1985, FDA further 
implemented the 1980 Act by establishing subparts B, C, and D in 21 CFR 
part 107 regarding the labeling of infant formula, exempt infant 
formulas, and nutrient requirements for infant formula, respectively 
(50 FR 1833, Jan. 14, 1985; 50 FR 48183, Nov. 22, 1985; and 50 FR 
45106, Oct. 30, 1985).


In 1986, Congress, as part of the Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986 (Pub. L. 
99-570) (the 1986 amendments), amended section 412 of the act to 
address concerns that had been expressed by Congress and consumers 
about the 1980 Act and its implementation related to the sufficiency of 
quality control testing, CGMP, recordkeeping, and recall requirements. 
The 1986 amendments: (1) State that an infant formula is deemed to be 
adulterated if it fails to provide certain required nutrients, fails to 
meet quality factor requirements established by the Secretary (and, by 
delegation, FDA), or if it is not processed in compliance with the CGMP 
and quality control procedures established by the Secretary; (2) 
require that the Secretary issue regulations establishing requirements 
for quality factors and CGMP, including quality control procedures; (3) 
require that infant formula manufacturers regularly audit their 
operations to ensure that those operations comply with CGMP and quality 
control procedure regulations; (4) expand the circumstances in which 
firms must make a submission to the Agency to include when there is a 
major change in an infant formula or a change that may affect whether 
the formula is adulterated; (5) specify the nutrient quality control 
testing that must be done on each batch of infant formula; (6) modify 
the infant formula recall requirements; and (7) give the Secretary 
authority to establish requirements for retention of records, including 
records necessary to demonstrate compliance with CGMP and quality 
control procedures. In 1989, the Agency implemented the provisions on 
recalls (secs. 412(f) and (g) of the act) by establishing subpart E in 
21 CFR part 107 (54 FR 4006, Jan. 27, 1989). In 1991, the Agency 
implemented the provisions on record and record retention requirements 
by revising 21 CFR 106.100 (56 FR 66566, Dec. 24, 1991).


The Agency has already promulgated regulations that respond to a number 
of the provisions of the 1986 amendments. The final rule would address 
additional provisions of these amendments.


Alternatives:


The 1986 amendments require the Secretary (and, by delegation, FDA) to 
establish, by regulation, requirements for quality factors and CGMPs, 
including quality control procedures. Therefore, there are no 
alternatives to rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FDA estimates that the costs from the final rule to producers of infant 
formula would include first year and recurring costs (e.g., 
administrative costs, implementation of quality controls, records, 
audit plans and assurances of quality factors in new infant formulas). 
FDA anticipates that the primary benefits would be a reduced risk of 
illness due to Cronobacter sakazakii and Salmonella spp in infant 
formula. Additional benefits stem from the quality factors requirements 
that would assure the healthy growth of infants consuming infant 
formula. Monetized estimates of costs and benefits for this final rule 
are not available at this time. The analysis for the proposed rule 
estimated costs of less than $1 million per year. FDA was not able to 
quantify benefits in the analysis for the proposed rule.


Risks:


Special controls for infant formula manufacturing are especially 
important because infant formula, particularly powdered infant formula, 
is an ideal medium for bacterial growth and because infants are at high 
risk of foodborne illness because of their immature immune systems. In 
addition, quality factors are of critical need to assure that the 
infant formula supports healthy growth in the first months of life when 
infant formula may be an infant's sole source of nutrition. The 
provisions of this rule will address weaknesses in production that may 
allow contamination of infant formula, including, contamination with C. 
sakazakii and Salmonella spp which can lead to serious illness with 
devastating sequelae and/or death. The provisions would also assure 
that new infant formulas support healthy growth in infants.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/09/96                    61 FR 36154
NPRM Comment Period End         12/06/96
NPRM Comment Period 
    Reopened                    04/28/03                    68 FR 22341
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    06/27/03                    68 FR 38247
NPRM Comment Period End         08/26/03
NPRM Comment Period 
    Reopened                    08/01/06                    71 FR 43392
NPRM Comment Period End         09/15/06
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Benson Silverman
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (HFS-850)
5100 Paint Branch Parkway
College Park, MD 20740
Phone: 301 436-1459
Email: benson.silverman@fda.hhs.gov
Related RIN: Split from 0910-AA04
RIN: 0910-AF27

[[Page 79529]]

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

51. MEDICAL DEVICE REPORTING; ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


21 USC 321, 331, 351, 352, 360c, 360e, 360i to 360j, 371, 374, 381, 
393; 42 USC 264, 271


CFR Citation:


21 CFR 803


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is amending its postmarket 
medical device reporting (MDR) regulations to require that 
manufacturers, importers, and user facilities submit mandatory reports 
of medical device adverse events to the Agency in an electronic format 
that FDA can process, review, and archive. FDA is taking this action to 
improve the Agency's systems for collecting and analyzing postmarketing 
safety reports. The proposed change would help the Agency to more 
quickly review safety reports and identify emerging public health 
issues.


Statement of Need:


The final rule would require user facilities and medical device 
manufacturers and importers to submit medical device adverse event 
reports in electronic format instead of using a paper form. FDA is 
taking this action to improve its adverse event reporting program by 
enabling it to more quickly receive and process these reports.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Agency has legal authority under section 519 of the Federal Food, 
Drug, and Cosmetic Act to require adverse event reports. The final rule 
would require manufacturers, importers, and user facilities to change 
their procedures to send reports of medical device adverse events to 
FDA in electronic format instead of using a hard copy form.


Alternatives:


There are two alternatives. The first alternative is to allow the 
voluntary submission of electronic MDRs. If a substantial number of 
reporters fail to voluntarily submit electronic MDRs, FDA will not 
obtain the benefits of standardized formats and quicker access to 
medical device adverse event data. The second alternative is to allow 
small entities more time to comply. Because so many device companies 
are small entities, this would significantly postpone the benefits of 
the rule.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The principal benefit would be to public health because the increased 
speed in the processing and analysis of 173,000 medical device reports 
currently submitted annually on paper. In addition, requiring 
electronic submission would reduce FDA annual operating costs by $1.9 
million and generate industry savings of about $9.8 million.


The total one-time cost for modifying SOPs and establishing electronic 
submission capabilities is estimated to range from $81.4 million to 
$101.0 million. Annually recurring costs totaled $8.8 million and 
included maintenance of electronic submission capabilities, including 
renewing the electronic certificate, and for some firms, the 
incremental cost to maintain high-speed Internet access.


Risks:


None


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            08/21/09                    74 FR 42310
NPRM Comment Period End         11/19/09
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Nancy Pirt
Regulatory Counsel
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Devices and Radiological Health
WO 66 Room 4438
10903 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20993
Phone: 301 796-6248
Fax: 301 847-8145
Email: nancy.pirt@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AF86
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--FDA

<###DOC>

52. ELECTRONIC REGISTRATION AND LISTING FOR DEVICES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 110-85; PL 107-188, sec 321; PL 107-250, sec 207; 21 USC 360(a) 
through 360(j); 21 USC 360(p)


CFR Citation:


21 CFR 807


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule will convert registration and listing to a paperless process. 
However, for those companies that do not have access to the Web, FDA 
will offer an avenue by which they can register, list, and update 
information with a paper submission. The rule also will amend part 807 
to reflect the timeframes for device establishment registration and 
listing established by sections 222 and 223 of Food and Drug 
Administration Amendment Act (FDAAA) and to reflect the requirement in 
section 510(i) of the Act, as amended by section 321 of the Public 
Health Security and Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response Act (BT 
Act), that foreign establishments provide FDA with additional pieces of 
information as part of their registration.


Statement of Need:


FDA is amending the medical device establishment registration and 
listing requirements under 21 CFR part 807 to reflect the electronic 
submission requirements in section 510(p) of the Act, which was added 
by section 207 of MDUFMA and later amended by section 224 of FDAAA. FDA 
also is amending 21 CFR part 807 to reflect

[[Page 79530]]

the requirements in section 321 of the BT Act for foreign 
establishments to furnish additional information as part of their 
registration. This rule will improve FDA's device establishment 
registration and listing system and utilize the latest technology in 
the collection of this information.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The statutory basis for our authority includes sections 510(a) through 
(j), 510(p), 701, 801, and 903 of the Act.


Alternatives:


The alternatives to this rulemaking include not updating the 
registration and listing regulations. Because of the new FDAAA 
statutory requirements and the advances in data collection and 
transmission technology, FDA believes this rulemaking is the preferable 
alternative.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Agency believes that there may be some one-time costs associated 
with the rulemaking, which involve resource costs of familiarizing 
users with the electronic system. Recurring costs related to submission 
of the information by domestic firms would probably remain the same or 
decrease because a paper submission and postage is not required. There 
might be some increase in the financial burden on foreign firms since 
they will have to supply additional registration information as 
required by section 321 of the BT Act.


Risks:


None


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/26/10                    75 FR 14510
NPRM Comment Period End         06/24/10
Final Rule                      09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Nancy Pirt
Regulatory Counsel
Department of Health and Human Services
Food and Drug Administration
Center for Devices and Radiological Health
WO 66 Room 4438
10903 New Hampshire Avenue
Silver Spring, MD 20993
Phone: 301 796-6248
Fax: 301 847-8145
Email: nancy.pirt@fda.hhs.gov
RIN: 0910-AF88
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

53.  REQUIREMENTS FOR LONG-TERM CARE FACILITIES: NOTIFICATION 
OF FACILITY CLOSURE (CMS-3230-IFC)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148, sec 6113


CFR Citation:


42 CFR 483; 42 CFR 488; 42 CFR 489


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, March 23, 2011.


Abstract:


This rule would ensure that, in the case of a facility closure, any 
individual who is the administrator of the facility provides written 
notification of closure and the plan for the relocation of residents at 
least 60 days prior to the impending closure, or if the facility's 
participation in Medicare or Medicaid is terminated, not later than the 
date the HHS Secretary determines appropriate.


Statement of Need:


Section 6113 of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA) amends the Act by 
setting forth certain requirements for LTC facility closures to ensure 
that, among other things, in the case of a facility closure, any 
individual who is the administrator of the facility provides written 
notification of the closure and a plan for the relocation of residents 
at least 60 days prior to the impending closure or, if the Secretary 
terminates the facility's participation in Medicare or Medicaid, not 
later than the date the Secretary determines appropriate.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Sections 1819(b)(1)(A) of the Social Security Act (the Act) for NFs and 
1919 (b)(1)(A) for SNFs state that a skilled nursing facility must care 
for its residents in such a manner and in such an environment as will 
promote maintenance or enhancement of the quality of life of each 
resident. Sections 1819(c)(2)(A) and 1919 (c)(2)(A) of the Act state 
that, in general, with certain specified exceptions, a nursing facility 
must permit each resident to remain in the facility and must not 
transfer or discharge the resident from the facility. Section 6113 of 
ACA amends section 1128I of the Act by setting forth certain 
requirements for LTC facility closures.


Alternatives:


None. This implements a statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The costs associated with the implementation of this rule are related 
to the efforts made by each facility to develop a plan for closure. The 
benefits would include the protection of residents' health and safety 
and a smooth transition for residents who need to be relocated, as well 
as their family members and facility staff.


Risks:


LTC facility closures have implications related to access, the quality 
of care, availability of services, and the overall health of residents. 
Without an organized process for facilities to follow in the event of a 
nursing home closure, there is a risk to the health and safety of 
residents.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None

[[Page 79531]]

Agency Contact:
Patricia Brooks
Health Insurance Specialist
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Office of Clinical Standards and Quality
Mailstop S3-02-01
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-4561
Email: patricia.brooks@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0938-AQ09
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--CMS

<###DOC>

54.  MEDICARE SHARED SAVINGS PROGRAM: ACCOUNTABLE CARE 
ORGANIZATIONS (CMS-1345-P)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148, sec 3022


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, January 1, 2012.


Abstract:


This rule would propose a shared savings program for provider groups to 
establish Accountable Care Organizations, agree to meet quality 
measures, and share in savings generated for Medicare by meeting 
certain benchmarks. Consistent with section 3022 of the Affordable Care 
Act of 2010, the shared savings program must be established by January 
1, 2012.


Statement of Need:


This rule would propose a shared savings program for provider groups to 
establish Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs), agree to meet quality 
measures, and share in savings generated for Medicare by meeting 
certain cost and quality benchmarks beginning January 1, 2012. This 
rule is aimed at improving quality and Medicare expenditures for 
Medicare beneficiaries and the Medicare program.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 3022 of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 requires the Secretary 
to establish a shared savings program by January 1, 2012.


Alternatives:


None. This is a statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Medicare expenditures will be adjusted beginning January 1, 2012.


Risks:


If this regulation is not published, the shared savings program will 
not be established by January 1, 2012, as required by ACA, thereby 
violating the statute.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Terri Postma
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Mail Stop C5-01-14
7500 Seurity Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-4169
Email: terri.postma@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0938-AQ22
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--CMS

<###DOC>

55.  PROPOSED CHANGES TO THE HOSPITAL INPATIENT PROSPECTIVE 
PAYMENT SYSTEMS FOR ACUTE CARE HOSPITALS AND FY 2012 RATES AND TO THE 
LONG-TERM CARE HOSPITAL PPS AND RY 2012 RATES (CMS-1518-P)

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


sec 1886(d) of the Social Security Act


CFR Citation:


42 CFR 412


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, April 1, 2011.


Final, Statutory, August 1, 2011.


Abstract:


This annual major proposed rule would revise the Medicare hospital 
inpatient and long-term care prospective payment systems (IPPS) for 
operating and capital-related costs. This proposed rule would implement 
changes arising from our continuing experience with these systems.


Statement of Need:


CMS annually revises the Medicare hospital inpatient prospective 
payment systems (IPPS) for operating and capital-related costs to 
implement changes arising from our continuing experience with these 
systems. In addition, we describe the proposed changes to the amounts 
and factors used to determine the rates for Medicare hospital inpatient 
services for operating costs and capital-related costs. Also, CMS 
annually updates the payment rates for the Medicare prospective payment 
system (PPS) for inpatient hospital services provided by long-term care 
hospitals (LTCHs). The proposed rule solicits comments on the proposed 
IPPS and LTCH payment rates and new policies. CMS will issue a final 
rule containing the payment rates for the FY 2012 IPPS and LTCHs at 
least 60 days before October 1, 2011.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Social Security Act (the Act) sets forth a system of payment for 
the operating costs of acute care hospital inpatient stays under 
Medicare Part A (Hospital Insurance) based on prospectively set rates. 
The Act requires the Secretary to pay for the capital-related costs of 
hospital inpatient and Long-Term Care stays under a PPS. Under these 
PPSs, Medicare payment for hospital inpatient and Long-Term Care 
operating and capital-related costs is made at predetermined, specific 
rates for each hospital discharge. These changes would be applicable to 
services furnished on or after October 1, 2011.


Alternatives:


None. This implements a statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Total expenditures will be adjusted for FY 2012.


Risks:


If this regulation is not published timely, inpatient hospital and LTCH 
services will not be paid appropriately beginning October 1, 2011.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes

[[Page 79532]]

Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Tiffany Swygert
Health Insurance Specialist, Division of Acute Care, Hospital and 
Ambulatory Policy Group
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Mailstop C4-25-11
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-4642
Email: tiffany.swygert@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0938-AQ24
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--CMS

<###DOC>

56.  REVISIONS TO PAYMENT POLICIES UNDER THE PHYSICIAN FEE 
SCHEDULE AND PART B FOR CY 2012 (CMS-1524-P)

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


Social security Act, sec 1102; Social Security Act, sec 1871


CFR Citation:


42 CFR 405; 42 CFR 410 to 411; 42 CFR 413 to 414; 42 CFR 426


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 1, 2011.


The statute requires that the final rule be issued by November.


Abstract:


This proposed rule would revise payment polices under the physician fee 
schedule, as well as other policy changes to payment under Part B. 
These changes would be applicable to services furnished on or after 
January 1, annually.


Statement of Need:


The statute requires that we establish each year, by regulation, 
payment amounts for all physicians' services furnished in all fee 
schedule areas. This major proposed rule would make changes affecting 
Medicare Part B payment to physicians and other Part B suppliers.


The final rule has a statutory publication date of November 1, 2011, 
and an implementation date of January 1, 2012.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 1848 of the Social Security Act (the Act) establishes the 
payment for physician services provided under Medicare. Section 1848 of 
the Act imposes a deadline of no later than November 1 for publication 
of the final physician fee schedule rule.


Alternatives:


None. This implements a statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Total expenditures will be adjusted for CY 2012.


Risks:


If this regulation is not published timely, physician services will not 
be paid appropriately.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Carol Bazell
Director, Division of Practitioner Services
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Mail Stop C4-03-06
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-6960
Email: carol.bazell@cms.hhs gov
RIN: 0938-AQ25
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--CMS

<###DOC>

57.  CHANGES TO THE HOSPITAL OUTPATIENT PROSPECTIVE PAYMENT 
SYSTEM AND AMBULATORY SURGICAL CENTER PAYMENT SYSTEM FOR CY 2012 (CMS-
1525-P)

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


sec 1833 of the Social Security Act


CFR Citation:


42 CFR 410; 42 CFR 416 ; 42 CFR 419


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 1, 2011.


Abstract:


This proposed rule would revise the Medicare hospital outpatient 
prospective payment system to implement applicable statutory 
requirements and changes arising from our continuing experience with 
this system. The proposed rule also describes changes to the amounts 
and factors used to determine payment rates for services. In addition, 
the rule proposes changes to the Ambulatory Surgical Center Payment 
System list of services and rates.


Statement of Need:


Medicare pays over 4,000 hospitals for outpatient department services 
under the hospital outpatient prospective payment system (OPPS). The 
OPPS is based on groups of clinically similar services called 
ambulatory payment classification groups (APCs). CMS annually revises 
the APC payment amounts based on the most recent claims data, proposes 
new payment policies, and updates the payments for inflation using the 
hospital operating market basket. The proposed rule solicits comments 
on the proposed OPPS payment rates and new policies. Medicare pays 
roughly 5,000 Ambulatory Surgical Centers (ASCs) under the ASC payment 
system. CMS annually revises the payment under the ASC payment system, 
proposes new policies, and updates payments for inflation using the 
Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). CMS will issue a 
final rule containing the payment rates for the 2012 OPPS and ASC 
payment system at least 60 days before January 1, 2012.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 1833 of the Social Security Act establishes Medicare payment 
for hospital outpatient services and ASC services. The final rule 
revises the Medicare hospital OPPS and ASC payment system to implement 
applicable statutory requirements. In addition, the proposed and final 
rules describe changes to the outpatient APC system, relative payment 
weights, outlier adjustments, and other amounts and factors used to 
determine the payment rates for Medicare hospital outpatient services 
paid under the

[[Page 79533]]

prospective payment system as well as changes to the rates and services 
paid under the ASC payment system. These changes would be applicable to 
services furnished on or after January 1, 2012.


Alternatives:


None. This is a statutory requirement.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Total expenditures will be adjusted for CY 2012.


Risks:


If this regulation is not published timely, outpatient hospital and ASC 
services will not be paid appropriately beginning January 1, 2012.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Federal


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Alberta Dwivedi
Health Insurance Specialist
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Mailstop C5-01-26
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21244
Phone: 410 786-0763
Email: alberta.dwivedi@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0938-AQ26
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--CMS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

58.  CIVIL MONEY PENALTIES FOR NURSING HOMES (CMS-2435-F)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


42 USC 1302 and 1395 (hh)


CFR Citation:


42 CFR 488


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, March 23, 2011, 1 year after enactment of PPACA.


Abstract:


This rule revises and expands current Medicare and Medicaid regulations 
regarding the imposition of civil money penalties by CMS when nursing 
homes are not in compliance with Federal participation requirements.


Statement of Need:


The intent of this final rule is to improve the efficiency and 
effectiveness of the nursing home enforcement process, particularly as 
it relates to civil money penalties imposed by CMS. The new provisions 
will reduce the delay between the identification of problems with 
noncompliance and the effect of certain penalties that are intended to 
motivate a nursing home to maintain continuous compliance with basic 
expectations regarding the provision of quality care. The new 
provisions also eliminate a facility's ability to significantly defer 
the direct financial effect of an applicable civil monetary penalty 
until after an often long litigation process. Specifically, this rule 
would allow for civil money penalty reductions when facilities self-
report and promptly correct their noncompliance; offer, in cases where 
civil money penalties are imposed, an independent informal dispute 
resolution process where interests of both facilities and residents are 
represented and balanced; provide for the establishment of an escrow 
account where civil money penalties may be placed until any applicable 
administrative appeal processes have been completed; and improve the 
extent to which civil money penalties collected from Medicare 
facilities can benefit nursing home residents. Through the proposed 
revisions, we intend to directly promote and improve the health, 
safety, and overall well-being of residents.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 6111 of the Affordable Care Act of 2010 amended the Act to 
incorporate specific provisions pertaining to the imposition and 
collection of civil money penalties when facilities do not meet 
Medicare and Medicaid participation requirements.


Alternatives:


None. This rule implements a statutory requirement. The proposed rule 
was published on July 12, 2010. Alternatives proposed by commenters 
will be considered in the preparation of the final rule.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The regulatory impact statement provides that these regulatory 
proposals would have no consequential effect on State, local, or tribal 
governments or on the private sector. The anticipated benefits of this 
regulation include stronger protections for nursing home residents, 
improved due process for nursing homes, incentives for prompt self-
correction of deficiencies, and increased quality improvement.


Risks:


CMS does not expect any additional risks to providers and/or States as 
a result of the implementation of this rule.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/12/10                    75 FR 39641
NPRM Comment Period End         08/11/10
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


State


Agency Contact:
Dr. Lori Chapman
Acting Director, Division of State Demonstrations and Waivers
Department of Health and Human Services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
7500 Security Boulevard
Baltimore, MD 21220
Phone: 410 786-9254
Email: lori.chapman@cms.hhs.gov
RIN: 0938-AQ02
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Administration for Children and Families (ACF)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

59. DESIGNATION RENEWAL OF HEAD START GRANTEES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007, PL 110-134


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined

[[Page 79534]]

Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule would implement provisions of the Improving Head Start for 
School Readiness Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-134), requiring the Secretary 
to develop a system that will evaluate each grantee's performance every 
5 years to determine which grantees are providing services of such high 
quality that they should be given another 5-year grant without needing 
to recompete for the grant.


Statement of Need:


The Administration for Children and Families will issue rules to amend 
45 CFR chapter XIII by adding a new part 1307, Policies and Procedures 
for Designation Renewal of Head Start and Early Head Start Grantees, in 
order to respond to the statutory requirements of The Improving Head 
Start for School Readiness Act of 2007, which establishes that Head 
Start grantees will be awarded grants for a 5-year period and only 
grantees delivering high quality services will be given another 5-year 
grant non-competitively. These regulations will describe the proposed 
system for designation renewal, including a proposal to transition all 
current continuous grants into 5-year grants over a 3-year period. 
These regulations will encourage excellence, establish accountability 
for poor performance, and open up Head Start to new energetic 
organizations that may have great capacity to run high quality 
programs.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 641 of the Head Start Act requires the Secretary of HHS to 
develop and implement a system for designation renewal (e.g., 
Designation Renewal System (DRS)) to determine if a Head Start agency 
is delivering a high-quality and comprehensive Head Start program that 
meets the educational, health, nutritional, and social needs of the 
children and families it serves and publish a notice in the Federal 
Register describing a proposed system for designation renewal, 
including a proposal for the transition to such system.


Alternatives:


The Administration for Children and Families is statutorily mandated to 
develop and implement a system for designation renewal. As a precursor 
to developing the system, the Head Start Act required the Secretary to 
establish an Advisory Committee to inform the development of a DRS and 
make recommendations to the Secretary. We are proposing to adopt the 
majority of the Advisory Committee's recommendations in whole or with 
minor modifications. In addition, we are considering additional and 
alternative criteria to be incorporated into the system for designation 
renewal, and ask for public comments regarding numerous provisions of 
the rule, as described in the preamble.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Agency estimates the costs of implementing the new reporting 
requirements described in the rule will be approximately $20,000 
annually. In addition, at least 25 percent of grantees reviewed in a 
year will be required to submit a competitive application for a new 5-
year grant, at an estimated cost of less than $1,500 for each grantee. 
In terms of benefits, the proposed system will fund only high-
performing grantees in order to ensure the best services for Head Start 
children are provided and child outcomes are improved.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/22/10                    75 FR 57704
NPRM Comment Period End         12/21/10
Final Action                    09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Collen Rathgeb
Department of Health and Human Services
Administration for Children and Families
1250 Maryland Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20447
Phone: 202 205-7378
Email: crathgeb@acf.hhs.gov
RIN: 0970-AC44
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HHS--Administration on Aging (AOA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

60.  COMMUNITY LIVING ASSISTANCE SERVICES AND SUPPORTS 
ENROLLMENT AND ELIGIBILITY RULES UNDER THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


PL 111-148, sec 8002


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department of Health and Human Services will issue rules to 
implement the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) 
program included in the Affordable Care Act. Specifically, the rules 
will define the enrollment and eligibility criteria for the program. 
Participation in the program is voluntary.


Statement of Need:


About 14 million people spend more than $230 billion a year on long-
term services and supports to assist them with daily living. Four times 
that many rely solely on unpaid care provided by family and friends. 
Medicare does not pay for long-term care, and while Medicaid is the 
largest public payer of these services, it is only available for people 
with few other resources. The CLASS program represents a significant 
new opportunity for all Americans to prepare themselves financially to 
remain as independent as possible under a variety of future health 
circumstances.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 8002 of Public Law 111-148 (Affordable Care Act) requires the 
promulgation of regulations to implement the CLASS program. 
Specifically, the law states, ``[t]he Secretary shall promulgate such 
regulations as are necessary to carry out the CLASS program in 
accordance with this title. Such regulations shall include provisions 
to prevent fraud and abuse under the program.''

[[Page 79535]]

Alternatives:


Under the law, the Secretary, in consultation with appropriate 
actuaries and other experts, will develop at least three actuarially 
sound benefit plans as alternatives for consideration for designation 
by the Secretary as the CLASS Independence Benefit Plan. Under the law, 
the Secretary will designate the final benefit plan by October 1, 2012.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The program will help Americans prepare themselves financially to 
remain as independent as possible under a variety of future health 
circumstances and their financial independence may help reduce spending 
down to Medicaid. Costs to implement the proposed regulation have not 
yet been estimated.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/00/11
Final Action                    10/00/12

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Laura Lawrence
Department of Health and Human Services
Administration on Aging
Phone: 202 357-3469
RIN: 0985-AA07
BILLING CODE 4150-24-S

[[Page 79536]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY (DHS)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was created in 2003 pursuant 
to the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107-296. DHS has a 
vital mission: To secure the nation from the many threats we face. This 
requires the dedication of more than 225,000 employees in jobs that 
range from aviation and border security to emergency response, from 
cybersecurity analyst to chemical facility inspector. Our duties are 
wide-ranging, but our goal is clear--keeping America safe.
Our mission gives us five main areas of responsibility:
1. Guarding against Terrorism;
2. Securing our Borders;
3. Enforcing our Immigration Laws;
4. Improving our Readiness for, Response to, and Recovery from 
            Disasters; and
5. Maturing and Unifying the Department.
In achieving these goals, we are continually strengthening our 
partnerships with communities, first responders, law enforcement, and 
government agencies--at the State, local, tribal, Federal, and 
international levels. We are accelerating the deployment of science, 
technology, and innovation in order to make America more secure, and we 
are becoming leaner, smarter, and more efficient, ensuring that every 
security resource is used as effectively as possible. For a further 
discussion of our five main areas of responsibility, see the DHS 
website at http://www.dhs.gov/xabout/responsibilities.shtm.
The regulations we have summarized below in the Department's fall 2010 
regulatory plan and in the Unified Agenda support the Department's five 
responsibility areas listed above. These regulations will improve the 
Department's ability to accomplish its mission.
The regulations we have identified in this year's fall regulatory plan 
continue to address legislative initiatives including, but not limited 
to, the following acts: The Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 
Commission Act of 2008 (9/11 Act), Public Law 110-53 (Aug. 3, 2007); 
the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 (PKEMRA), 
Public Law 109-295 (Oct. 4, 2006); the Consolidated Natural Resources 
Act of 2008 (CNRA), Public Law No. 110-220 (May 7, 2008); the Security 
and Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 (SAFE Port Act), Public 
Law 109-347 (Oct. 13, 2006); and the Consolidated Security, Disaster 
Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act, 2009, Public Law 110-329 
(Sep. 30, 2008).
DHS strives for organizational excellence and uses a centralized and 
unified approach in managing its regulatory resources. The Office of 
the General Counsel manages the Department's regulatory program, 
including the Unified Agenda and The Regulatory Plan. In addition, DHS 
senior leadership reviews each significant regulatory project to ensure 
that the project fosters and supports the Department's mission.
DHS is committed to ensuring that all of its regulatory initiatives are 
aligned with its guiding principles to protect civil rights and civil 
liberties, integrate our actions, build coalitions and partnerships, 
develop human resources, innovate, and be accountable to the American 
public. DHS is also committed to the principles described in Executive 
Order 12866, as amended, such as promulgating regulations that are 
cost-effective and maximizing the net benefits of regulations. The 
Department values public involvement in the development of its 
regulatory plan, agenda, and regulations, and takes particular concern 
with the impact its rules have on small businesses. DHS and each of its 
components continue to emphasize the use of plain language in our 
notices and rulemaking documents to promote a better understanding of 
regulations and increased public participation in the Department's 
rulemakings.
The fall 2010 Regulatory Plan for DHS includes regulations from DHS 
components--including U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services 
(USCIS), the U.S. Coast Guard (Coast Guard), U.S. Customs and Border 
Protection (CBP), the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the 
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the Transportation 
Security Administration (TSA), which have active regulatory programs. 
In addition, it includes regulations from the Department's major 
offices and directorates such as the National Protection and Programs 
Directorate (NPPD). Below is a discussion of the fall 2010 regulatory 
plan for DHS regulatory components, as well as for DHS offices and 
directorates.
United States Citizenship and Immigration Services
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) administer 
immigration benefits and services while protecting homeland security. 
USCIS has a strong commitment to welcoming individuals who seek entry 
through the U.S. immigration system, providing clear and useful 
information regarding the immigration process, promoting the values of 
citizenship, and assisting those in need of humanitarian protection. 
Based on a comprehensive review of the planned USCIS regulatory agenda, 
USCIS will promulgate several rulemakings to directly support these 
commitments and goals.
Regulations Related to the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands
During 2009, USCIS issued a series of regulations to implement the 
extension of U.S. immigration law to the Commonwealth of Northern 
Mariana Islands (CNMI), as required under title VII of the Consolidated 
Natural Resources Act of 2008. USCIS will issue the following CNMI 
final rules during fiscal year 2011: ``CNMI Transitional Worker 
Classification,'' ``E-2 Nonimmigrant Status for Aliens of the CNMI with 
Long-Term Investor Status,'' and the joint USCIS/Department of Justice 
(DOJ) regulation ``Application of Immigration Regulations to the 
CNMI.''
Improvements to the Immigration System
USCIS is currently engaged in a multi-year transformation effort to 
create a more efficient, effective, and customer-focused organization 
by improving our business processes and technology. In the coming 
years, USCIS will publish several rules to facilitate that effort. To 
improve customer service specifically, USCIS is pursuing a regulatory 
initiative that will provide for selection of visa numbers by lottery 
for H-1B petitions based on electronic registration.
Registration Requirements for Employment-Based Categories Subject to 
Numerical Limitations
USCIS will propose a revised registration process for H-1B petitioners 
who are subject to a numerical limit or ``cap.'' The rule would propose 
to create a process by which USCIS would randomly select a sufficient 
number of timely filed registrations to meet the applicable cap. Only 
petitioners whose registrations are randomly selected would be eligible 
to file an H-1B petition for a cap-subject prospective worker. 
Enhancing customer service, the

[[Page 79537]]

rule would eliminate the need for petitioning employers to prepare and 
file complete H-1B petitions before knowing whether a prospective 
worker has ``won'' the H-1B lottery. The rule would also reduce the 
costs incurred by USCIS in entering data and subsequently returning 
non-selected petitions to employers once the cap is reached.
Regulatory Changes Involving Humanitarian Benefits
USCIS offers protection to individuals who face persecution by 
adjudicating applications for refugees and asylees. Other humanitarian 
benefits are available to individuals who have been victims of severe 
forms of trafficking or criminal activity.
Asylum and Withholding Definitions
USCIS plans a regulatory proposal to amend the regulations that govern 
asylum eligibility. The amendments are expected to focus on portions of 
the regulations that deal with determinations of whether persecution is 
inflicted on account of a protected ground, the requirements for 
establishing the failure of State protection, and the definition of 
membership in a particular social group. This effort should provide 
greater stability and clarity in this important area of the law.
Exception to the Persecution Bar for Asylum, Refugee, or Temporary 
Protected Status, and Withholding of Removal
DHS, in a joint rulemaking with DOJ, will propose amendments to 
existing DHS and DOJ regulations to resolve ambiguity in the statutory 
language precluding eligibility for asylum, refugee resettlement, 
temporary protected status, and withholding of removal of an applicant 
who ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the 
persecution of others. The proposed rule would provide a limited 
exception for persecutory actions taken by the applicant under duress 
and clarify the required levels of the applicant's knowledge of the 
persecution.
``T'' and ``U'' Nonimmigrants
USCIS plans additional regulatory initiatives related to T 
nonimmigrants (victims of trafficking), U nonimmigrants (victims of 
criminal activity), and Adjustment of Status for T and U status 
holders. By promulgating additional regulations related to these 
victims of specified crimes or severe forms of human trafficking, USCIS 
hopes to provide greater stability for these vulnerable groups, their 
advocates, and the community. These rulemakings will contain provisions 
that seek to ease documentary requirements for this vulnerable 
population and provisions that provide greater clarity to the law 
enforcement community. In addition, publication of these rules will 
inform the community about how their petitions are adjudicated.
United States Coast Guard
The U.S. Coast Guard (Coast Guard) is a military, multi-mission, 
maritime service of the United States and the only military 
organization within DHS. It is the principal Federal agency responsible 
for maritime safety, security, and stewardship and delivers daily value 
to the Nation through multi-mission resources, authorities, and 
capabilities.
Effective governance in the maritime domain hinges upon an integrated 
approach to safety, security, and stewardship. The Coast Guard's 
policies and capabilities are integrated and interdependent, delivering 
results through a network of enduring partnerships. The Coast Guard's 
ability to field versatile capabilities and highly-trained personnel is 
one of the U.S. Government's most significant and important strengths 
in the maritime environment.
America is a maritime nation, and our security, resilience, and 
economic prosperity are intrinsically linked to the oceans. Safety, 
efficient waterways, and freedom of transit on the high seas are 
essential to our well-being. The Coast Guard is leaning forward, poised 
to meet the demands of the new millennium. The Coast Guard creates 
value for the public through solid prevention and response efforts. 
Activities involving oversight and regulation, enforcement, maritime 
presence, and public and private partnership foster increased maritime 
safety, security, and stewardship.
The statutory responsibilities of the Coast Guard include ensuring 
marine safety and security, preserving maritime mobility, protecting 
the marine environment, enforcing U.S. laws and international treaties, 
and performing search and rescue. The Coast Guard supports the 
Department's overarching goals of mobilizing and organizing our Nation 
to secure the homeland from terrorist attacks, natural disasters, and 
other emergencies. The rulemaking projects identified for the Coast 
Guard in the Unified Agenda, and the rules appearing in the fall 2010 
Regulatory Plan below, contribute to the fulfillment of those 
responsibilities and reflect our regulatory policies. The Coast Guard's 
rulemaking projects support maritime safety, security, and 
environmental protection as indicated by the wide range of topics 
covered in its rulemaking projects in this Unified Agenda.
Inspection of Towing Vessels
In 2004, Congress amended U.S. law by adding towing vessels to the 
types of commercial vessels that must be inspected by the Coast Guard. 
Congress also provided guidance relevant to the use of a safety 
management system as part of the inspection regime. The intent of the 
proposed rule is to promote safer work practices and reduce casualties 
on towing vessels by ensuring that towing vessels adhere to prescribed 
safety standards and safety management systems. The proposed rule was 
developed in cooperation with the Towing Vessel Safety Advisory 
Committee (TSAC). It would establish a new subchapter dedicated to 
towing vessels and covering vessel equipment, systems, operational 
standards, and inspection requirements. To implement this change, the 
Coast Guard is developing regulations to prescribe standards, 
procedures, tests, and inspections for towing vessels. This rulemaking 
supports maritime safety and maritime stewardship.
Standards for Living Organisms in Ships' Ballast Water Discharged in 
U.S. Waters
This rule would set performance standards for the quality of ballast 
water discharged in U.S. waters and require that all vessels that 
operate in U.S. waters and are bound for ports or places in the U.S. 
and are equipped with ballast tanks, install and operate a Coast Guard 
approved Ballast Water Management System (BWMS) before discharging 
ballast water into U.S. waters. This would include vessels bound for 
offshore ports or places. As the effectiveness of ballast water 
exchange varies from vessel to vessel, the Coast Guard believes that 
setting performance standards would be the most effective way for 
approving BWMS that are environmentally protective and scientifically 
sound. Ultimately, the approval of BWMS would require procedures 
similar to those located in title 46, subchapter Q, of the Code of 
Federal Regulations, to ensure that the BWMS works, not only in the 
laboratory, but also under shipboard conditions. These would include: 
Pre-approval requirements, application requirements, land-based/
shipboard

[[Page 79538]]

testing requirements, design and construction requirements, electrical 
requirements, engineering requirements, and piping requirements. This 
requirement is intended to meet the requirements of the National 
Invasive Species Act (NISA). Ballast water discharged from ships is a 
significant pathway for the introduction and spread of non-indigenous 
aquatic nuisance species. These organisms, which may be plants, 
animals, bacteria, or pathogens, have the potential to displace native 
species, degrade native habitats, spread disease, and disrupt human 
economic and social activities that depend on water resources. This 
rulemaking supports maritime stewardship.
Outer Continental Shelf Activities
The Coast Guard is revising regulations to address new developments in 
the offshore industry, to fully address existing legislation, to 
effectively implement interagency agreements, to respond to comments 
received from the notice of proposed rulemaking (Outer Continental 
Shelf Activities, 64 FR 68416 (Dec. 7, 1999), and to update security 
requirements and procedures. This proposed rule would improve the level 
of safety in the workplace and security for personnel and units engaged 
in Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) activities. The Coast Guard is the 
lead Federal agency for OCS workplace safety and health--other than for 
matters generally related to drilling and production that are regulated 
by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation, and Enforcement--
on facilities and vessels engaged in the exploration for, or 
development or production of, minerals on the OCS. The last major 
revision of the Coast Guard's OCS regulations occurred in 1982. At that 
time, the offshore industry was not as technologically advanced as it 
is today. Offshore activities were in relatively shallow water near 
land, where help was readily available during emergency situations. The 
regulations required only basic equipment, primarily for lifesaving 
appliances and hand-held portable fire extinguishers. Since 1982, the 
requirements in 33 CFR chapter I, subchapter N, have not kept pace with 
the changing offshore technology or the safety problems it creates as 
OCS activities extend to deeper water (10,000 feet) and move farther 
offshore (150 miles). This rulemaking would reassess all of the Coast 
Guard's current OCS regulations in order to help make the OCS a safer 
workplace, and it supports the Commandant's strategic goals of marine 
safety and environmental stewardship.
Updates to 33 CFR Subchapter H--Maritime Security.
The intent of this rulemaking is to strengthen security of our Nation's 
ports, vessels, facilities, and Outer Continental Shelf facilities by 
incorporating clarifications realized since the original Maritime 
Transportation Security Act (MTSA) regulations of 2003, Security and 
Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 (SAFE Port Act) requirements, 
and the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2006.This 
proposed rule would incorporate feedback received from industry 
stakeholders, Coast Guard field units, and the public since the 
original MTSA regulations came into effect in 2003. The proposed rule 
would also consolidate into regulation appropriate actions promulgated 
in a series of Policy Advisory Council (PAC) papers, Navigation and 
Inspection Circulars (NVICs), and MTSA Help Desk responses; address 
screening standards for port facilities and vessels; establish security 
training standards that will be modeled after the courses developed by 
the Maritime Administration (MARAD); and the training standards 
(mandatory and non-mandatory) and courses developed by the 
International Maritime Organization (IMO). It would also update 
existing regulations regarding the areas of maritime security plans, 
facility and vessel security plans, and facility exercise requirements 
in the SAFE Port Act of 2006. This rulemaking supports the Commandant's 
strategic goal of maritime security.
Assessment Framework and Organizational Restatement Regarding 
Preemption for Certain Regulations Issued by the Coast Guard
This rule would restate the preemptive effect of existing Coast Guard 
regulations and articulate the assessment framework for evaluating the 
preemptive effect of future regulations. This rule would not alter the 
preemptive effect of any regulation: It would merely restate the 
existing law. By clarifying the preemptive effect of Coast Guard 
regulations, the Coast Guard intends to increase transparency, 
encourage appropriate State regulation, and avoid or reduce litigation 
related to State and local attempts to regulate in preempted areas. In 
doing so, the Coast Guard intends to comply with the May 2009 
presidential memoranda on preemption, and on transparency and open 
government, and also intends to reinforce a uniform maritime regulatory 
regime that is predictable and useful for maritime interests. The Coast 
Guard expects no additional cost impacts to the industry from this 
rule, because it only restates and clarifies the status of Federal and 
State law as it exists.
The following Coast Guard rulemakings may be of particular interest to 
small entities:
Inspection of Towing Vessels
Based on preliminary analysis, the Coast Guard determined 1,059 
operators of 5,208 uninspected towing vessels would incur additional 
costs from this rulemaking and over 92 percent of these entities are 
small businesses. This rulemaking would require operators of previously 
uninspected towing vessels to incur the costs of becoming regulated 
under a new inspection regime.
Standards for Living Organisms in Ships' Ballast Water Discharged in 
U.S. Waters
Based on preliminary analysis in the notice of proposed rulemaking (74 
FR 44632), the Coast Guard determined 850 U.S. operators of 2,616 
vessels would incur additional costs from this rulemaking and over 57 
percent of these entities are small businesses. This rulemaking would 
require operators to purchase and install ballast water management 
systems costing between $258,000 and $419,000 per vessel, depending 
vessel and technology type.
Updates to 33 CFR Subchapter H--Maritime Security
Based on preliminary analysis, the Coast Guard determined that 55 
percent of operators affected by this rulemaking are small entities. 
This rulemaking would require operators to incur additional costs for 
training and exercise provisions.
United States Customs and Border Protection
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is the Federal agency 
principally responsible for the security of our Nation's borders, both 
at and between the ports of entry and at official crossings into the 
United States. CBP must accomplish its border security and enforcement 
mission without stifling the flow of legitimate trade and travel. The 
primary mission of CBP is its homeland security mission, that is, to 
prevent terrorists and terrorist weapons from entering the United 
States. An important aspect of this priority mission involves improving 
security at our borders and ports of entry, but it also means extending 
our zone of security beyond our physical borders.
CBP is also responsible for administering laws concerning the

[[Page 79539]]

importation into the United States of goods and enforcing the laws 
concerning the entry of persons into the United States. This includes 
regulating and facilitating international trade; collecting import 
duties; enforcing U.S. trade, immigration, and other laws of the United 
States at our borders; inspecting imports, overseeing the activities of 
persons and businesses engaged in importing; enforcing the laws 
concerning smuggling and trafficking in contraband; apprehending 
individuals attempting to enter the United States illegally; protecting 
our agriculture and economic interests from harmful pests and diseases; 
servicing all people, vehicles, and cargo entering the United States; 
maintaining export controls; and protecting U.S. businesses from theft 
of their intellectual property.
In carrying out its priority mission, CBP's goal is to facilitate the 
processing of legitimate trade and people efficiently without 
compromising security. Consistent with its primary mission of homeland 
security, CBP intends to finalize several rules during the next fiscal 
year that are intended to improve security at our borders and ports of 
entry. We have highlighted some of these rules below.
Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).
On June 9, 2008, CBP published an interim final rule amending DHS 
regulations to implement the Electronic System for Travel Authorization 
(ESTA) for aliens who wish to enter the United States under the Visa 
Waiver Program (VWP) at air or sea ports of entry. This rule is 
intended to fulfill the requirements of section 711 of the Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (9/11 Act). The rule 
establishes ESTA and delineates the data field DHS has determined will 
be collected by the system. The rule requires that each alien traveling 
to the United States under the VWP must obtain electronic travel 
authorization via the ESTA System in advance of such travel. VWP 
travelers may obtain the required ESTA authorization by electronically 
submitting to CBP biographic and other information as currently 
required by the I-94W Nonimmigrant Alien Arrival/Departure Form (I-
94W). By Federal Register notice dated November 13, 2008, the Secretary 
of Homeland Security informed the public that ESTA would become 
mandatory beginning January 12, 2009. This means that all VWP travelers 
must either obtain travel authorization in advance of travel under ESTA 
or obtain a visa prior to traveling to the United States.
By shifting from a paper to an electronic form and requiring the data 
in advance of travel, CBP will be able to determine before the alien 
departs for the U.S., the eligibility of nationals from VWP countries 
to travel to the United States and to determine whether such travel 
poses a law enforcement or security risk. By modernizing the VWP, the 
ESTA is intended to increase national security and provide for greater 
efficiencies in the screening of international travelers by allowing 
for vetting of subjects of potential interest well before boarding, 
thereby reducing traveler delays based on lengthy processes at ports of 
entry. CBP intends to issue a final rule during the next fiscal year. 
On August 9, 2010, CBP published an interim final rule amending the 
ESTA regulations to require ESTA applicants to pay a congressionally 
mandated fee which is the sum of two amounts: a $10 travel promotion 
fee for an approved ESTA and a $4 operational fee for the use of ESTA 
set by the Secretary of Homeland Security to, at a minimum, ensure the 
recovery of the full costs of providing and administering the ESTA. CBP 
is working to finalize the 2008 and 2010 interim final rules during 
fiscal year 2011.
Importer Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements
The Security and Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 (SAFE Port 
Act) calls for CBP to promulgate regulations to require the electronic 
transmission of additional data elements for improved high-risk 
targeting. See Public Law No. 109-347, section 203 (Oct. 13, 2006). 
This includes appropriate security elements of entry data for cargo 
destined for the United States by vessel prior to loading of such cargo 
on vessels at foreign seaports. The SAFE Port Act requires that the 
information collected reasonably improve CBP's ability to identify 
high-risk shipments to prevent smuggling and ensure cargo safety and 
security.
On November 25, 2008, CBP published an interim final rule ``Importer 
Security Filing and Additional Carrier Requirements,'' amending CBP 
regulations to require carriers and importers to provide to CBP, via a 
CBP-approved electronic data interchange system, information necessary 
to enable CBP to identify high-risk shipments to prevent smuggling and 
ensure cargo safety and security. This rule, which became effective on 
January 26, 2009, improves CBP risk assessment and targeting 
capabilities, facilitates the prompt release of legitimate cargo 
following its arrival in the United States, and assists CBP in 
increasing the security of the global trading system. The comment 
period for the interim final rule concluded on June 1, 2009. CBP is 
analyzing comments and conducting a structured review of certain 
flexibility provided in the interim final rule. CBP intends to publish 
a final rule during fiscal year 2011.
Implementation of the Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver Program
CBP published an interim final rule in November 2008 amending the DHS 
regulations to replace the current Guam Visa Waiver Program with a new 
Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver program. This rule implements portions of the 
Consolidated National Resources Act of 2008 (CNRA), which extends the 
immigration laws of the United States to the Commonwealth of the 
Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and, among others things, provides for 
a visa waiver program for travel to Guam and the CNMI. The amended 
regulations set forth the requirements for nonimmigrant visitors who 
seek admission for business or pleasure and solely for entry into and 
stay on Guam or the CNMI without a visa. The rule also establishes six 
ports of entry in the CNMI for purposes of administering and enforcing 
the Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver program. CBP intends to issue a final rule 
during fiscal year 2011.
Global Entry Program
Pursuant to section 7208(k) of the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism 
Prevention Act of 2004, as amended, CBP issued a notice of proposed 
rulemaking (NPRM) in the fall of 2009, proposing to establish an 
international trusted traveler program called Global Entry. This 
voluntary program would allow CBP to expedite clearance of pre-
approved, low-risk air travelers into the United States. CBP has been 
operating the Global Entry program as a pilot at several airports since 
June 6, 2008. Based on the successful operation of the pilot, CBP 
proposed to establish Global Entry as a permanent voluntary regulatory 
program. CBP will evaluate the public comments received in response to 
the NPRM, in order to develop a final rule. CBP intends to issue a 
final rule during fiscal year 2011.
The rules discussed above foster DHS' mission. Under section 403(1) of 
the Homeland Security Act of 2002, the former-U.S. Customs Service, 
including

[[Page 79540]]

functions of the Secretary of the Treasury relating thereto, 
transferred to the Secretary of Homeland Security. As part of the 
initial organization of DHS, the Customs Service inspection and trade 
functions were combined with the immigration and agricultural 
inspection functions of the Border Patrol and transferred into CBP. It 
is noted that certain regulatory authority of the United States Customs 
Service relating to customs revenue function was retained by the 
Department of the Treasury (see the Department of the Treasury 
Regulatory Plan). In addition to its plans to continue issuing 
regulations to enhance border security, CBP, during fiscal year 2011, 
expects to continue to issue regulatory documents that will facilitate 
legitimate trade and implement trade benefit program. CBP regulations 
regarding the customs revenue function are discussed in the regulatory 
plan of the Department of the Treasury.
Federal Emergency Management Agency
The mission of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is to 
support our citizens and first responders to ensure that, as a Nation, 
we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to 
prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate 
all hazards. In fiscal year 2011, FEMA will continue to serve that 
mission and promote the Department of Homeland Security's goals. In 
furtherance of the Department and Agency's goals, in the upcoming 
fiscal year, FEMA will be working on regulations to implement 
provisions of the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 
(PKEMRA) (Pub. L. 109-295, Oct. 4, 2006), and to implement lessons 
learned from past events.
Public Assistance Program regulations
FEMA will work to revise the Public Assistance Program regulations in 
44 CFR part 206 to reflect changes made to the Robert T. Stafford 
Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act by PKEMRA, the Pets 
Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006 (PETS Act) (Pub. L. 
No. 109-308, Oct. 6, 2006), the Local Community Recovery Act of 2006 
(Pub. L. No. 109-218, Apr. 20, 2006), and the Security and 
Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 (SAFE Port Act) (Pub. L. No. 
109-347, Oct. 13, 2006), and to make other substantive and 
nonsubstantive clarifications and corrections to the Public Assistance 
regulations. The proposed changes would expand eligibility to include 
performing arts facilities and community arts centers pursuant to 
section 688 of PKEMRA; include education in the list of critical 
services pursuant to section 689(h) of PKEMRA, thus allowing private 
nonprofit educational facilities to be eligible for restoration 
funding; add accelerated Federal assistance to available assistance 
pursuant to section 681 of PKEMRA; include household pets and service 
animals in essential assistance pursuant to section 689 of PKEMRA and 
section 4 of the PETS Act; provide for expedited payments of grant 
assistance for the removal of debris pursuant to section 610 of the 
SAFE Port Act; and allow for a contract to be set aside for award based 
on a specific geographic area pursuant to section 2 of the Local 
Community Recovery Act of 2006. Other changes would include adding or 
changing requirements to improve and streamline the Public Assistance 
grant application process.
Federal Law Enforcement Training Center
The Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC) does not have any 
significant regulatory actions planned for fiscal year 2011.
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is the principal 
criminal investigative arm of the Department of Homeland Security and 
one of the three Department components charged with the civil 
enforcement of the Nation's immigration laws. ICE's primary mission is 
to protect national security, public safety, and the integrity of our 
borders through the criminal and civil enforcement of Federal law 
governing border control, customs, trade, and immigration.
During fiscal year 2011, ICE will pursue rulemaking actions that 
improve two critical subject areas: The detention of aliens who are 
subject to final orders of removal and the processes for the Student 
and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP).
Continued Detention of Aliens Subject to Final Orders of Removal
ICE will improve the post order custody review process in a final rule 
related to the continued detention of aliens subject to final orders of 
removal in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions in Zadvydas v. 
Davis, 533 U.S. 678 (2001) and Clark v. Martinez, 543 U.S. 371 (2005), 
as well as make changes pursuant to the enactment of the Homeland 
Security Act of 2002. During fiscal year 2011, ICE will also issue a 
companion notice of proposed rulemaking that will allow the public an 
opportunity to comment on new sections of the custody determination 
process not previously published for comment.
Processes for the Student and Exchange Visitor Program
ICE will improve SEVP processes by publishing a final Optional 
Practical Training (OPT) rule, which will respond to comments on the 
OPT Interim Final Rule (IFR) published on June 9, 2008. The IFR 
increased the maximum period of OPT from 12 months to 29 months for 
nonimmigrant students who have completed a science, technology, 
engineering, or mathematics degree and who accept employment with 
employers who participate in USCIS' E-Verify employment verification 
program.
National Protection and Programs Directorate
The goal of the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) is 
to advance the Department's risk-reduction mission. Reducing risk 
requires an integrated approach that encompasses both physical and 
virtual threats and their associated human elements.
Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Program
The Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Act, section 563 of the Fiscal 
Year 2008 Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, Public 
Law No. 110-161, amended the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to provide 
DHS with the authority to ``regulate the sale and transfer of ammonium 
nitrate by an ammonium nitrate facility . . . to prevent the 
misappropriation or use of ammonium nitrate in an act of terrorism.''
The Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Act directs DHS to promulgate 
regulations requiring potential buyers and sellers of ammonium nitrate 
to register with DHS. As part of the registration process, the statute 
directs DHS to screen registration applicants against the Federal 
Government's Terrorist Screening Database. The statute also requires 
sellers of ammonium nitrate to verify the identities of those seeking 
to purchase it; to record certain information about each sale or 
transfer of ammonium nitrate; and to report thefts and losses of 
ammonium nitrate to DHS.
The rule would aid the Federal Government in its efforts to prevent the

[[Page 79541]]

misappropriation of ammonium nitrate for use in acts of terrorism. By 
preventing such misappropriation, this rule will limit terrorists' 
abilities to threaten the public and to threaten the Nation's critical 
infrastructure and key resources. By securing the Nation's supply of 
ammonium nitrate, it will be more difficult for terrorists to obtain 
ammonium nitrate materials for use in terrorist acts.
DHS published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) for the 
Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Program on October 29, 2008, and 
has received a number of public comments on that ANPRM. DHS is 
presently reviewing those comments and is in the process of developing 
a notice of proposed rulemaking, which the Department hopes to issue 
during fiscal year 2011.
Collection of Alien Biometric Data Upon Exit From the United States at 
Air and Sea Ports of Departure; United States Visitor and Immigrant 
Status Indicator Technology Program
The U.S. Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology (US-VISIT) 
is an integrated, automated entry-exit system that records the arrival 
and departure of aliens, verifies aliens' identities, and verifies 
aliens' travel documents by comparison of biometric identifiers. The 
goals of US-VISIT are to enhance the security of U.S. citizens and 
visitors to the United States, facilitate legitimate travel and trade, 
ensure the integrity of the U.S. immigration system, and protect the 
privacy of visitors to the United States.
The US-VISIT program, through CBP officers or Department of State (DOS) 
consular offices, collects biometrics (digital fingerprints and 
photographs) from aliens seeking to enter the United States. DHS checks 
that information against government databases to identify suspected 
terrorists, known criminals, or individuals who have previously 
violated U.S. immigration laws. This system assists DHS and DOS in 
determining whether an alien seeking to enter the United States is, in 
fact, admissible to the United States under existing law. No biometric 
exit system currently exists, however, to assist DHS or DOS in 
determining whether an alien has overstayed the terms of his or her 
visa or other authorization to be present in the United States.
NPPD published a notice of proposed rulemaking on April 24, 2008, 
proposing to establish an exit program at all air and sea ports of 
departure in the United States. Congress subsequently enacted the 
Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing 
Appropriations Act of 2009, Public Law No.110-329 (Sep. 30, 2008), 
requiring DHS to delay issuance of a final rule until the conclusion of 
pilot tests to analyze the collection of biometrics from at least two 
air exit scenarios. DHS currently is reviewing the results of those 
tests. DHS continues to work to ensure that the final air/sea exit rule 
will be issued as soon as practicable.
Transportation Security Administration
The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) protects the Nation's 
transportation systems to ensure freedom of movement for people and 
commerce. TSA is committed to continuously setting the standard for 
excellence in transportation security through its people, processes, 
and technology as we work to meet the immediate and long-term needs of 
the transportation sector.
In fiscal year 2011, TSA will promote the DHS mission by emphasizing 
regulatory efforts that allow TSA to better identify, detect, and 
protect against threats against various modes of the transportation 
system, while facilitating the efficient movement of the traveling 
public, transportation workers, and cargo.
Screening of Air Cargo
TSA will finalize an interim final rule that codifies a statutory 
requirement of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission 
Act of 2008 (9/11 Act), Public Law 110-53 (Aug. 3, 2007) that TSA 
establish a system to screen 100 percent of cargo transported on 
passenger aircraft by August 3, 2010. To assist in carrying out this 
mandate, TSA has established a voluntary program under which it 
certifies cargo screening facilities to screen cargo according to TSA 
standards prior to its being tendered to aircraft operators for 
carriage on passenger aircraft.
Large Aircraft Security Program (General Aviation)
TSA plans to issue a supplemental notice of proposed rulemaking (SNPRM) 
to propose amendments to current aviation transportation security 
regulations to enhance the security of general aviation (GA) by 
expanding the scope of current requirements and by adding new 
requirements for certain GA aircraft operators. To date, the 
Government's focus with regard to aviation security generally has been 
on air carriers and commercial operators. As vulnerabilities and risks 
associated with air carriers and commercial operators have been reduced 
or mitigated, terrorists may perceive that GA aircraft are more 
vulnerable and may view them as attractive targets. This rule would 
enhance aviation security of certain GA aircraft to undertake other 
security measures. TSA published a notice of proposed rulemaking on 
October 30, 2008, and received over 7,000 public comments, generally 
urging significant changes to the proposal. The SNPRM will respond to 
the comments and contain proposals on addressing security in the GA 
sector.
Security Training for Surface Mode Employees
TSA will propose regulations to enhance the security of several non-
aviation modes of transportation. In particular, TSA will propose 
regulations requiring freight railroad carriers, public transportation 
agencies (including rail mass transit and bus systems), passenger 
railroad carriers, over-the-road bus operators, and motor carriers 
transporting certain hazardous materials to conduct security training 
for front line employees. This regulation would implement sections 1408 
(Public Transportation), 1517 (Freight Railroads), and 1534(a) (Over 
the Road (OTR) Buses) of the 9/11 Act. The NPRM will define which 
employees must be trained under these provisions, in compliance with 
the definitions of frontline employees in the pertinent provisions of 
the 9/11 Act. Some parts of the proposed rule would extend beyond the 
requirements of the 9/11 Act; those portions are authorized by the 
Aviation and Transportation Security Act.
Aircraft Repair Station Security.
TSA will finalize a rule requiring repair stations that are 
certificated by the Federal Aviation Administration under 14 CFR part 
145 to adopt and implement standard security programs and to comply 
with security directives issued by TSA. TSA issued a notice of proposed 
rulemaking on November 18, 2009. The final rule will also codify the 
scope of TSA's existing inspection program and require regulated 
parties to allow DHS officials to enter, inspect, and test property, 
facilities, and records relevant to repair stations. This rulemaking 
action implements section 1616 of the 9/11 Act.
Standardized Vetting, Adjudication, and Redress Process and Fees
TSA is developing a proposed rule to revise and standardize the 
procedures, adjudication criteria, and fees for most

[[Page 79542]]

of the security threat assessments (STA) of individuals that TSA 
conducts. The scope of the rulemaking will include transportation 
workers from almost all modes of transportation who are required to 
undergo an STA by a regulatory program and new programs, including 
those covered under the 9/11 Act. In addition, TSA will propose 
equitable fees to cover the cost of the STAs and credentials for some 
personnel. TSA plans to identify new efficiencies in processing STAs 
and ways to streamline existing regulations by simplifying language and 
removing redundancies.
United States Secret Service
The United States Secret Service does not have any significant 
regulatory actions planned for fiscal year 2011.
DHS Regulatory Plan for Fiscal Year 2011
A more detailed description of the priority regulations that comprise 
DHS' fall 2010 regulatory plan follows.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--Office of the Secretary (OS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

61. SECURE HANDLING OF AMMONIUM NITRATE PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


sec 563 of the 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, subtitle J--Secure 
Handling of Ammonium Nitrate, PL 110-161


CFR Citation:


6 CFR 31


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, May 26, 2008, Publication of Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking.


Abstract:


This rulemaking will implement the December 2007 amendment to the 
Homeland Security Act entitled ``Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate.'' 
The amendment requires the Department of Homeland Security to 
``regulate the sale and transfer of ammonium nitrate by an ammonium 
nitrate facility. . .to prevent the misappropriation or use of ammonium 
nitrate in an act of terrorism.''


Statement of Need:


Pursuant to section 563 of the 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, 
the Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Act, Public Law 110-161, the 
Department of Homeland Security is required to promulgate a rulemaking 
to create a registration regime for certain buyers and sellers of 
ammonium nitrate. The rule, as proposed by this NPRM, would create that 
regime, and will aid the Federal Government in its efforts to prevent 
the misappropriation of ammonium nitrate for use in acts of terrorism. 
By preventing such misappropriation, this rule would limit terrorists' 
abilities to threaten the public and to threaten the Nation's critical 
infrastructure and key resources. By securing the Nation's supply of 
ammonium nitrate, it would be much more difficult for terrorists to 
obtain ammonium nitrate materials for use in improvised explosive 
devices. As a result, there is a direct value in the deterrence of a 
catastrophic terrorist attack using ammonium nitrate, such as the 
Oklahoma City attack that killed over 160, injured 853 people, and is 
estimated to have caused $652 million in damages ($921 million in 
2009).


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 563 of the 2008 Consolidated Appropriations Act, subtitle J-- 
Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate, Public Law 110-161, authorizes and 
requires this rulemaking.


Alternatives:


The Department of Homeland Security is required by statute to publish 
regulations implementing the Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Act. 
As part of its notice of proposed rulemaking, the Department will seek 
public comment on the numerous alternative ways in which the final 
Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Program could carry out the 
requirements of the Secure Handling of Ammonium Nitrate Act.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


A proposed rule registering certain buyers and sellers of ammonium 
nitrate would have costs to ammonium nitrate (AN) purchasers, including 
farms, fertilizer mixers, farm supply wholesalers and coops, golf 
courses, landscaping services, explosives distributors, mines, retail 
garden centers, and lab supply wholesalers. There would also be costs 
to AN sellers, such as ammonium nitrate fertilizer and explosive 
manufacturers, fertilizer mixers, farm supply wholesalers and coops, 
retail garden center, explosives distributors, fertilizer applicator 
services, and lab supply wholesalers. Costs will relate to the point of 
sale requirements, registration activities, recordkeeping, inspections/
audits, and reporting of theft or loss.


Because the value of the benefits of reducing risk of a terrorist 
attack is a function of both the probability of an attack and the value 
of the consequence, it is difficult to identify the particular risk 
reduction associated with the implementation of this rule. When the 
proposed rule is published, DHS will provide a break even analysis. The 
program elements that would help achieve the risk reductions will be 
discussed in the break even analysis. These elements and related 
qualitative benefits include point of sale identification requirements 
and requiring individuals to be screened against the TSDB resulting in 
known bad actors being denied the ability to purchase ammonium nitrate.


Risks:


Explosives containing ammonium nitrate are commonly used in terrorist 
attacks. Such attacks have been carried out both domestically and 
internationally. The 1995 Murrah Federal Building attack in Oklahoma 
City claimed the lives of 167 individuals and demonstrated firsthand to 
America how ammonium nitrate could be misused by terrorists. In 
addition to the Murrah Building attack, the Provisional Irish 
Republican Army used ammonium nitrate as part of its London, England 
bombing campaign in the early 1980s. More recently, ammonium nitrate 
was used in the 1998 East African Embassy bombings and in November 2003 
bombings in Istanbul, Turkey. Additionally, since the events of 9/11, 
stores of ammonium nitrate have been confiscated during raids on 
terrorist sites around the world, including sites in Canada, England, 
India, and the Philippines.


The Department of Homeland Security aims to prevent terrorist attacks 
within the United States and to reduce the vulnerability of the United 
States to terrorism. By preventing the misappropriation or use of 
ammonium nitrate in acts of terrorism, this rulemaking will support the 
Department's efforts to prevent terrorist attacks and to reduce the 
Nation's vulnerability to terrorist attacks. This rulemaking is 
complementary to other Department programs seeking to reduce the risks 
posed by terrorism, including the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism

[[Page 79543]]

Standards program (which seeks in part to prevent terrorists from 
gaining access to dangerous chemicals) and the Transportation Worker 
Identification Credential program (which seeks in part to prevent 
terrorists from gaining access to certain critical infrastructure), 
among other programs.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           10/29/08                    73 FR 64280
Correction                      11/05/08                    73 FR 65783
ANPRM Comment Period End        12/29/08
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Todd Klessman
Acting Deputy Director, Infrastructure Security Compliance Division
Department of Homeland Security
Ballston 1 - 5th floor
Room 5030
Arlington, VA 22201
Phone: 703 235-4921
Email: todd.klessman@dhs.gov
RIN: 1601-AA52
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--OS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

62. COLLECTION OF ALIEN BIOMETRIC DATA UPON EXIT FROM THE UNITED STATES 
AT AIR AND SEA PORTS OF DEPARTURE; UNITED STATES VISITOR AND IMMIGRANT 
STATUS INDICATOR TECHNOLOGY PROGRAM (US-VISIT)

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1101 to 1104; 8 USC 1182; 8 USC 1184 to 1185 (pursuant to EO 
13323); 8 USC 1221; 8 USC 1365a, 1365b; 8 USC 1379; 8 USC 1731 to 1732


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 215.1; 8 CFR 215.8


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


DHS established the United States Visitor and Immigrant Status 
Indicator Technology Program (US-VISIT) in accordance with a series of 
legislative mandates requiring that DHS create an integrated automated 
entry-exit system that records the arrival and departure of aliens; 
verifies aliens' identities; and authenticates travel documents. This 
rule requires aliens to provide biometric identifiers at entry and upon 
departure at any air and sea port of entry at which facilities exist to 
collect such information.


Statement of Need:


This rule establishes an exit system at all air and sea ports of 
departure in the United States. This rule requires aliens subject to 
United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology Program 
biometric requirements upon entering the United States to also provide 
biometric identifiers prior to departing the United States from air or 
sea ports of departure.


Alternatives:


The proposed rule would require aliens who are subject to US-VISIT 
biometric requirements upon entering the United States to provide 
biometric information before departing from the United States at air 
and sea ports of entry. The rule proposed a performance standard for 
commercial air and vessel carriers to collect the biometric information 
and to submit this information to DHS no later than 24 hours after air 
carrier staff secure the aircraft doors on an international departure, 
or for sea travel, no later than 24 hours after the vessel's departure 
from a U.S. port. DHS is considering numerous alternatives based upon 
public comment on the alternatives in the NPRM. Alternatives included 
various points in the process, kiosks, and varying levels of 
responsibility for the carriers and government. DHS may select another 
variation between the outer bounds of the alternatives presented or 
another alternative if subsequent analysis warrants.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The proposed rule expenditure and delay costs for a 10-year period are 
estimated at $3.5 billion. Alternative costs range from $3.1 billion to 
$6.4 billion. US-VISIT assessed seven categories of economic impacts 
other than direct expenditures. Of these, two are economic costs: 
Social costs resulting from increased traveler queue and processing 
time; and social costs resulting from increased flight delays. Ten-year 
benefits are estimated at $1.1 billion. US-VISIT assessed seven 
categories of economic impacts other than direct expenditures. Of 
these, five are benefits, which include costs that could be avoided for 
each alternative: Cost avoidance resulting from improved detection of 
aliens overstaying visas; cost avoidance resulting from improved U.S. 
Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) efficiency attempting 
apprehension of overstays; cost avoidance resulting from improved 
efficiency processing exit/entry data; improved compliance with NSEERS 
requirements due to the improvement in ease of compliance; and improved 
national security environment. These benefits are measured 
quantitatively or qualitatively.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/24/08                    73 FR 22065
NPRM Comment Period End         06/23/08
Final Rule                      04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

[[Page 79544]]

Agency Contact:
Long D. Kaiser
Policy Analyst, National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD), 
US-VISIT
Department of Homeland Security
Washington, DC 20528
Phone: 202 295-0735
Email: long.d.kaiser@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Previously reported as 1650-AA04
RIN: 1601-AA34
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

63. ASYLUM AND WITHHOLDING DEFINITIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1103; 8 USC 1158; 8 USC 1226; 8 USC 1252; 8 USC 1282; 8 CFR 2


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 208


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule proposes to amend Department of Homeland Security regulations 
that govern asylum eligibility. The amendments focus on portions of the 
regulations that deal with the definitions of membership in a 
particular social group, the requirements for failure of State 
protection, and determinations about whether persecution is inflicted 
on account of a protected ground. This rule codifies long-standing 
concepts of the definitions. It clarifies that gender can be a basis 
for membership in a particular social group. It also clarifies that a 
person who has suffered or fears domestic violence may under certain 
circumstances be eligible for asylum on that basis. After the Board of 
Immigration Appeals published a decision on this issue in 1999, Matter 
of R-A-, Int. Dec. 3403 (BIA 1999), it became clear that the governing 
regulatory standards required clarification. The Department of Justice 
began this regulatory initiative by publishing a proposed rule 
addressing these issues in 2000.


Statement of Need:


This rule provides guidance on a number of key interpretive issues of 
the refugee definition used by adjudicators deciding asylum and 
withholding of removal (withholding) claims. The interpretive issues 
include whether persecution is inflicted on account of a protected 
ground, the requirements for establishing the failure of State 
protection, and the parameters for defining membership in a particular 
social group. This rule will aid in the adjudication of claims made by 
applicants whose claims fall outside of the rubric of the protected 
grounds of race, religion, nationality, or political opinion. One 
example of such claims which often fall within the particular social 
group ground concerns people who have suffered or fear domestic 
violence. This rule is expected to consolidate issues raised in a 
proposed rule in 2000, and to address issues that have developed since 
the publication of the proposed rule. This should provide greater 
stability and clarity in this important area of the law.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The purpose of this rule is to provide guidance on certain issues that 
have arisen in the context of asylum and withholding adjudications. The 
1951 Geneva Convention relating to the Status of Refugees (1951 
Convention) contains the internationally accepted definition of a 
refugee. United States immigration law incorporates an almost identical 
definition of a refugee as a person outside his or her country of 
origin ``who is unable or unwilling to return to, and is unable or 
unwilling to avail himself or herself of the protection of, that 
country because of persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution on 
account of race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular 
social group, or political opinion.`` Section 101(a)(42) of the 
Immigration and Nationality Act.


Alternatives:


A sizable body of interpretive case law has developed around the 
meaning of the refugee definition. Historically, much of this case law 
has addressed more traditional asylum and withholding claims based on 
the protected grounds of race, religion, nationality, or political 
opinion. In recent years, however, the United States increasingly has 
encountered asylum and withholding applications with more varied bases, 
related, for example, to an applicant's gender or sexual orientation. 
Many of these new types of claims are based on the ground of 
``membership in a particular social group,'' which is the least well-
defined of the five protected grounds within the refugee definition.


On December 7, 2000, a proposed rule was published in the Federal 
Register providing guidance on the definitions of ``persecution'' and 
``membership in a particular social group.'' Prior to publishing a 
final rule, the Department will be considering how the nexus between 
persecution and a protected ground might be further conceptualized; how 
membership in a particular social group might be defined and evaluated; 
and what constitutes a State's inability or unwillingness to protect 
the applicant where the persecution arises from a non-State actor. This 
rule will provide guidance to the following adjudicators: USCIS asylum 
officers, Department of Justice Executive Office for Immigration Review 
(EOIR) immigration judges, and members of the EOIR Board of Immigration 
Appeals. The alternative to publishing this rule would be to allow the 
standards governing this area of law to continue to develop piecemeal 
through administrative and judicial precedent. This approach has 
resulted in inconsistent and confusing standards, and the Department 
has therefore determined that promulgation of the final rule is 
necessary.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


By providing a clear framework for key asylum and withholding issues, 
we anticipate that adjudicators will have clear guidance, increasing 
administrative efficiency, and consistency in adjudicating these cases. 
The rule will also promote a more consistent and predictable body of 
administrative and judicial precedent governing these types of cases. 
We anticipate that this will enable applicants to better assess their 
potential eligibility for asylum, and to present their claims more 
efficiently when they believe that they may qualify, thus reducing the 
resources spent on adjudicating claims that do not qualify. In 
addition, a more consistent and predictable body of law on these issues 
will likely result in fewer appeals, both administrative and judicial, 
and reduce the associated litigation costs. The Department has no way 
of accurately predicting how this rule will impact the number of asylum 
applications filed in the United States. Based on anecdotal evidence 
and on the reported experience of other nations that have adopted 
standards under which the results are similar to those we anticipate 
from this rule, we do not

[[Page 79545]]

believe this rule will cause a large change in the number of asylum 
applications filed.


Risks:


The failure to promulgate a final rule in this area presents 
significant risks of further inconsistency and confusion in the law. 
The Government's interests in fair, efficient and consistent 
adjudications would be compromised.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/07/00                    65 FR 76588
NPRM Comment Period End         01/22/01
NPRM                            03/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


CIS No. 2092-00


Transferred from RIN 1115-AF92


Agency Contact:
Jedidah Hussey
Deputy Chief, Asylum Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Suite 3300, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-1663
Email: jedidah.m.hussey@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AA41
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

64. REGISTRATION REQUIREMENT FOR PETITIONERS SEEKING TO FILE H-1B 
PETITIONS ON BEHALF OF ALIENS SUBJECT TO NUMERICAL LIMITATIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1184(g)


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 103; 8 CFR 299


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department of Homeland Security is proposing to amend its 
regulations governing petitions filed on behalf of alien workers 
subject to annual numerical limitations. This rule proposes an 
electronic registration program for petitions subject to numerical 
limitations contained in the Immigration and Nationality Act (the Act). 
Initially, the program would be for the H-1B nonimmigrant 
classification; however, other nonimmigrant classifications will be 
added as needed. This action is necessary because the demand for H-1B 
specialty occupation workers by U.S. companies generally exceeds the 
numerical limitation. This rule is intended to allow USCIS to more 
efficiently manage the intake and lottery process for these H-1B 
petitions.


Statement of Need:


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) proposes to establish 
a mandatory Internet-based electronic registration process for U.S. 
employers seeking to file H-1B petitions for alien workers subject to 
either the 65,000 or 20,000 caps. This registration process would allow 
U.S. employers to electronically register for consideration of 
available H-1B cap numbers. The mandatory proposed registration process 
will alleviate administrative burdens on USCIS service centers and 
eliminate the need for U.S. employers to needlessly prepare and file H-
1B petitions without any certainty that an H-1B cap number will 
ultimately be allocated to the beneficiary named on that petition.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 214(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides limits 
on the number of alien temporary workers who may be granted H-1B 
nonimmigrant status each fiscal year (commonly known as the ``cap''). 
USCIS has responsibility for monitoring the requests for H-1B workers 
and administers the distribution of available H-1B cap numbers in light 
of these limits.


Alternatives:


To ensure a fair and orderly distribution of H-1B cap numbers, USCIS 
evaluated its current random selection process, and has found that when 
it receives a significant number of H-1B petitions within the first few 
days of the H-1B filing period, it is extremely difficult to handle the 
volume of petitions received in advance of the H-1B random selection 
process. Further, the current petition process of preparing and mailing 
H-1B petitions, with the required filing fee, can be burdensome and 
costly for employers, if the petition is returned because the cap was 
reached and the petition was not selected in the random selection 
process.


Accordingly, this rule proposes to implement a new process to allow 
U.S. employers to electronically register for consideration of 
available H-1B cap numbers without having to first prepare and submit 
the petition.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


USCIS estimates that this rule will result in a net benefit to society. 
Currently, employers submit a petition, at great expense, without any 
certainty that an H-1B cap number will ultimately be allocated to the 
beneficiary named on the petition. The new mandatory, Internet-based 
registration system allows employers to complete a much shorter and 
less expensive registration process for consideration of available H-1B 
cap numbers. The new system will also relieve a significant 
administrative burden and expense from USCIS.


This rule will reduce costs for some employers and increase them for 
others. For employers that are not allocated a cap number and therefore 
do not ultimately file a petition, there will be a significant cost 
savings. Employers that are allocated a cap number and ultimately file 
a petition will experience the new and additional cost of filing the 
registration. Additionally, USCIS will incur additional costs to 
implement and maintain the registration system. USCIS has weighed the 
benefits and costs associated with this rule and determined that the 
benefits to society outweigh the costs.


Risks:


There is a risk that a petitioner will submit multiple petitions for 
the same H-1B beneficiary so that the U.S. employer will have a better 
chance of his or her petition being selected. Accordingly, should USCIS 
receive multiple petitions for the same H-1B beneficiary by the same 
petitioner, the system will only accept the first petition and reject 
the duplicate petitions.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11
NPRM Comment Period End         03/00/11

[[Page 79546]]

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


USCIS 2443-08


Agency Contact:
Claudia F. Young
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Service Center Operations
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-8163
Email: cf1young@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AB71
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

65.  EXCEPTION TO THE PERSECUTION BAR FOR ASYLUM, REFUGEE, AND 
TEMPORARY PROTECTED STATUS, AND WITHHOLDING OF REMOVAL

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1101; 8 USC 1103; 8 USC 1158; 8 USC 1226; PL 107-26; PL 110-229; 
. . .


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 1; 8 CFR 208; 8 CFR 244; 8 CFR 1244; . . .


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This joint rule proposes amendments to Department of Homeland Security 
(DHS) and Department of Justice (DOJ) regulations to describe the 
circumstances under which an applicant will continue to be eligible for 
asylum, refugee, or temporary protected status, special rule 
cancellation of removal under the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central 
American Relief Act, and withholding of removal, even if DHS or DOJ has 
determined that the applicant's actions contributed, in some way, to 
the persecution of others. The purpose of this rule is to resolve 
ambiguity in the statutory language precluding eligibility for asylum, 
refugee, and temporary protected status of an applicant who ordered, 
incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in the persecution of 
others. The proposed amendment would provide a limited exception for 
actions taken by the applicant under duress and clarify the required 
levels of the applicant's knowledge of the persecution.


Statement of Need:


This rule resolves ambiguity in the statutory language precluding 
eligibility for asylum, refugee, and temporary protected status of an 
applicant who ordered, incited, assisted, or otherwise participated in 
the persecution of others. The proposed amendment would provide a 
limited exception for actions taken by the applicant under duress and 
clarify the required levels of the applicant's knowledge of the 
persecution.


Summary of Legal Basis:


In Negusie v. Holder, 129 S. Ct. 1159 (2009), the Supreme Court 
addressed whether the persecutor bar should apply where an alien's 
actions were taken under duress. DHS believe that this is an 
appropriate subject for rulemaking and propose to amend the applicable 
regulations to set out their interpretation of the statute. In 
developing this regulatory initiative, DHS has carefully considered the 
purpose and history behind enactment of the persecutor bar, including 
its international law origins and the criminal law concepts upon which 
they are based.


Alternatives:


DHS did consider the alternative of not publishing a rulemaking on 
these issues. To leave this important area of the law without an 
administrative interpretation, however, would confuse adjudicators and 
the public.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The programs affected by this rule exist so that the United States may 
respond effectively to global humanitarian situations and assist people 
who are in need. USCIS provides a number of humanitarian programs and 
protection to assist individuals in need of shelter or aid from 
disasters, oppression, emergency medical issues, and other urgent 
circumstances. This rule will advance the humanitarian goals of the 
asylum/refugee program, and other specialized programs. The main 
benefits of such tend to be intangible and difficult to quantify in 
economic and monetary terms. These forms of relief have not been 
available to certain persecutors. This rule will allow an exception to 
this bar from protection for applicants who can meet the appropriate 
evidentiary standard. Consequently, this rule may result in a small 
increase in the number of applicants for humanitarian programs. To the 
extent a small increase in applicants occurs, there could be additional 
fee costs incurred by these applicants.


Risks:


If DHS were not to publish a regulation, the public would face a 
lengthy period of confusion on these issues. There could also be 
inconsistent interpretations of the statutory language, leading to 
significant litigation and delay for the affected public.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Molly Groom
Office of the Chief Counsel
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20259
Phone: 202 272-1400
Fax: 202 272-1408
Email: molly.groom@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AB89
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

66. NEW CLASSIFICATION FOR VICTIMS OF SEVERE FORMS OF TRAFFICKING IN 
PERSONS; ELIGIBILITY FOR T NONIMMIGRANT STATUS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


5 USC 552; 5 USC 552a; 8 USC 1101 to 1104; 8 USC 1182; 8 USC 1184; 8

[[Page 79547]]

USC 1187; 8 USC 1201; 8 USC 1224 to 1227; 8 USC 1252 to 1252a; 22 USC 
7101; 22 USC 7105; . . .


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 103; 8 CFR 212; 8 CFR 214; 8 CFR 274a; 8 CFR 299


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


T classification was created by 107(e) of the Victims of Trafficking 
and Violence Protection Act of 2000 (VTVPA), Public Law 106-386. The T 
nonimmigrant classification was designed for eligible victims of severe 
forms of trafficking in persons who aid law enforcement with their 
investigation or prosecution of the traffickers, and who can establish 
that they would suffer extreme hardship involving unusual and severe 
harm if they were removed from the United States. The rule establishes 
application procedures and responsibilities for the Department of 
Homeland Security and provides guidance to the public on how to meet 
certain requirements to obtain T nonimmigrant status. The Trafficking 
Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, Public Law 110-457, 
made amendments to the T nonimmigrant status provisions of the 
Immigration and Naturalization Act. The Department will issue another 
interim final rule to make the changes required by recent legislation 
and to provide the opportunity for notice and comment.


Statement of Need:


T nonimmigrant status is available to eligible victims of severe forms 
of trafficking in persons who have complied with any reasonable request 
for assistance in the investigation or prosecution of acts of 
trafficking in persons, and who can demonstrate that they would suffer 
extreme hardship involving unusual and severe harm if removed from the 
United States. This rule addresses the essential elements that must be 
demonstrated for classification as a T nonimmigrant alien; the 
procedures to be followed by applicants to apply for T nonimmigrant 
status; and evidentiary guidance to assist in the application process.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 107(e) of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA), Public 
Law 106-386, as amended, established the T classification to create a 
safe haven for certain eligible victims of severe forms of trafficking 
in persons, who assist law enforcement authorities in investigating and 
prosecuting the perpetrators of these crimes.


Alternatives:


To develop a comprehensive Federal approach to identifying victims of 
severe forms of trafficking in persons, to provide them with benefits 
and services, and to enhance the Department of Justice's ability to 
prosecute traffickers and prevent trafficking in persons in the first 
place, a series of meetings with stakeholders were conducted with 
representatives from key Federal agencies; national, State, and local 
law enforcement associations; non-profit, community-based victim rights 
organizations; and other groups. Suggestions from these stakeholders 
were used in the drafting of this regulation.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


There is no cost to applicants associated with this regulation. 
Applicants for T nonimmigrant status do not pay application or 
biometric fees.


The anticipated benefits of these expenditures include: Assistance to 
trafficked victims and their families, prosecution of traffickers in 
persons, and the elimination of abuses caused by trafficking 
activities.


Benefits which may be attributed to the implementation of this rule are 
expected to be:


1. An increase in the number of cases brought forward for investigation 
and/or prosecution;


2. Heightened awareness by the law enforcement community of trafficking 
in persons;


3. Enhanced ability to develop and work cases in trafficking in persons 
cross-organizationally and multi-jurisdictionally, which may begin to 
influence changes in trafficking patterns.


Risks:


There is a 5,000-person limit to the number of individuals who can be 
granted T-1 status per fiscal year. Eligible applicants who are not 
granted T-1 status due solely to the numerical limit will be placed on 
a waiting list to be maintained by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration 
Services (USCIS).


To protect T-1 applicants and their families, USCIS will use various 
means to prevent the removal of T-1 applicants on the waiting list, and 
their family members who are eligible for derivative T status, 
including its existing authority to grant deferred action, parole, and 
stays of removal.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              01/31/02                     67 FR 4784
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   03/04/02
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          04/01/02
Interim Final Rule              09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State


Additional Information:


CIS No. 2132-01; AG Order No. 2554-2002


There is a related rulemaking, CIS No. 2170-01, the new U nonimmigrant 
status (RIN 1615-AA67).


Transferred from RIN 1115-AG19


Agency Contact:
Laura M. Dawkins
Chief, Family Immigration and Victim Protection Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-1470
Fax: 202 272-1480
Email: laura.dawkins@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AA59
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

67. ADJUSTMENT OF STATUS TO LAWFUL PERMANENT RESIDENT FOR ALIENS IN T 
AND U NONIMMIGRANT STATUS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


5 USC 552; 5 USC 552a; 8 USC 1101 to 1104; 8 USC 1182; 8 USC 1184; 8 
USC 1187; 8 USC 1201; 8 USC 1224 to 1227; 8 USC 1252 to 1252a; 8 USC 
1255; 22 USC 7101; 22 USC 7105


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 204; 8 CFR 214; 8 CFR 245

[[Page 79548]]

Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule sets forth measures by which certain victims of severe forms 
of trafficking who have been granted T nonimmigrant status and victims 
of certain criminal activity who have been granted U nonimmigrant 
status may apply for adjustment to permanent resident status in 
accordance with Public Law 106-386, Victims of Trafficking and Violence 
Protection Act of 2000; and Public Law 109-162, Violence Against Women 
and Department of Justice Reauthorization Act of 2005. The Trafficking 
Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, Public Law 110-457, 
made amendments to the T nonimmigrant status provisions of the 
Immigration and Naturalization Act. The Department will issue another 
interim final rule to make the changes required by recent legislation 
and to provide the opportunity for notice and comment.


Statement of Need:


This regulation is necessary to permit aliens in lawful T or U 
nonimmigrant status to apply for adjustment of status to that of lawful 
permanent residents. T nonimmigrant status is available to aliens who 
are victims of a severe form of trafficking in persons and who are 
assisting law enforcement in the investigation or prosecution of the 
acts of trafficking. U nonimmigrant status is available to aliens who 
are victims of certain crimes and are being helpful to the 
investigation or prosecution of those crimes.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This rule implements the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection 
Act of 2000 (VTVPA), Public Law 106-386, 114 Stat. 1464 (Oct. 28, 
2000), as amended, to permit aliens in lawful T or U nonimmigrant 
status to apply for adjustment of status to that of lawful permanent 
residents.


Alternatives:


USCIS did not consider alternatives to managing T and U applications 
for adjustment of status. Ease of administration dictates that 
adjustment of status applications from T and U nonimmigrants would be 
best handled on a first in, first out basis, because that is the way 
applications for T and U status are currently handled.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


USCIS uses fees to fund the cost of processing applications and 
associated support benefits. The fees to be collected resulting from 
this rule will be approximately $3 million in the first year, $1.9 
million in the second year, and an average about $32 million in the 
third and subsequent years. To estimate the new fee collections to be 
generated by this rule, USCIS estimated the fees to be collected for 
new applications for adjustment of status from T and U nonimmigrants 
and their eligible family members. After that, USCIS estimated fees 
from associated applications that are required such as biometrics, and 
others that are likely to occur in direct connection with applications 
for adjustment, such as employment authorization or travel 
authorization.


The anticipated benefits of these expenditures include: Continued 
assistance to trafficked victims and their families, increased 
investigation and prosecution of traffickers in persons, and the 
elimination of abuses caused by trafficking activities.


Benefits that may be attributed to the implementation of this rule are 
expected to be:


1. An increase in the number of cases brought forward for investigation 
and/or prosecution;


2. Heightened awareness of trafficking-in-persons issues by the law 
enforcement community; and


3. Enhanced ability to develop and work cases in trafficking in persons 
cross-organizationally and multi-jurisdictionally, which may begin to 
influence changes in trafficking patterns.


Risks:


Congress created the U nonimmigrant status (``U visa'') to provide 
immigration protection to crime victims who assist in the investigation 
and prosecution of those crimes. Although there are no specific data on 
alien crime victims, statistics maintained by the Department of Justice 
have shown that aliens, especially those aliens without legal status, 
are often reluctant to help in the investigation or prosecution of 
crimes. U visas are intended to help overcome this reluctance and aid 
law enforcement accordingly.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              12/12/08                    73 FR 75540
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   01/12/09
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          02/10/09
Interim Final Rule              09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State


Additional Information:


CIS No. 2134-01


Transferred from RIN 1115-AG21


Agency Contact:
Laura M. Dawkins
Chief, Family Immigration and Victim Protection Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-1470
Fax: 202 272-1480
Email: laura.dawkins@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AA60
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

68. NEW CLASSIFICATION FOR VICTIMS OF CRIMINAL ACTIVITY; ELIGIBILITY 
FOR THE ``U'' NONIMMIGRANT STATUS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


5 USC 552; 5 USC 552a; 8 USC 1101; 8 USC 1101 note; 8 USC 1102


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 103; 8 CFR 204; 8 CFR 212; 8 CFR 214; 8 CFR 299


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule sets forth application requirements for a new nonimmigrant 
status. The U classification is for non-U.S. Citizen/Lawful Permanent 
Resident victims of certain crimes who cooperate with an investigation 
or prosecution of those crimes. There is a limit of 10,000 principals 
per year.


This rule establishes the procedures to be followed in order to 
petition for the

[[Page 79549]]

U nonimmigrant classifications. Specifically, the rule addresses the 
essential elements that must be demonstrated to receive the 
nonimmigrant classification, procedures that must be followed to make 
an application, and evidentiary guidance to assist in the petitioning 
process. Eligible victims will be allowed to remain in the United 
States. The Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008, 
Public Law 110-457, made amendments to the T nonimmigrant status 
provisions of the Immigration and Naturalization Act. The Department 
will issue another interim final rule to make the changes required by 
recent legislation and to provide the opportunity for notice and 
comment.


Statement of Need:


This rule provides requirements and procedures for aliens seeking U 
nonimmigrant status. U nonimmigrant classification is available to 
alien victims of certain criminal activity who assist government 
officials in the investigation or prosecution of that criminal 
activity. The purpose of the U nonimmigrant classification is to 
strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and 
prosecute such crimes as domestic violence, sexual assault, and 
trafficking in persons, while offering protection to alien crime 
victims in keeping with the humanitarian interests of the United 
States.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Congress created the U nonimmigrant classification in the Battered 
Immigrant Women Protection Act of 2000 (BIWPA). Congress intended to 
strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to investigate and 
prosecute cases of domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking of 
aliens, and other crimes, while offering protection to victims of such 
crimes. Congress also sought to encourage law enforcement officials to 
better serve immigrant crime victims.


Alternatives:


USCIS has identified four alternatives, the first being chosen for the 
rule:


1. USCIS would adjudicate petitions on a first in, first out basis. 
Petitions received after the limit has been reached would be reviewed 
to determine whether or not they are approvable, but for the numerical 
cap. Approvable petitions that are reviewed after the numerical cap has 
been reached would be placed on a waiting list and written notice sent 
to the petitioner. Priority on the waiting list would be based upon the 
date on which the petition is filed. USCIS would provide petitioners on 
the waiting list with interim relief until the start of the next fiscal 
year in the form of deferred action, parole, or a stay of removal.


2. USCIS would adjudicate petitions on a first in, first out basis, 
establishing a waiting list for petitions that are pending or received 
after the numerical cap has been reached. Priority on the waiting list 
would be based upon the date on which the petition was filed. USCIS 
would not provide interim relief to petitioners whose petitions are 
placed on the waiting list.


3. USCIS would adjudicate petitions on a first in, first out basis. 
However, new filings would be reviewed to identify particularly 
compelling cases for adjudication. New filings would be rejected once 
the numerical cap is reached. No official waiting list would be 
established; however, interim relief until the start of the next fiscal 
year would be provided for some compelling cases. If a case was not 
particularly compelling, the filing would be denied or rejected.


4. USCIS would adjudicate petitions on a first in, first out basis. 
However, new filings would be rejected once the numerical cap is 
reached. No waiting list would be established, nor would interim relief 
be granted.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


USCIS estimates the total annual cost of this interim rule to 
applicants to be $6.2 million. This cost includes the biometric 
services fee that petitioners must pay to USCIS, the opportunity cost 
of time needed to submit the required forms, the opportunity cost of 
time required for a visit to an Application Support Center, and the 
cost of traveling to an Application Support Center.


This rule will strengthen the ability of law enforcement agencies to 
investigate and prosecute such crimes as domestic violence, sexual 
assault, and trafficking in persons, while offering protection to alien 
crime victims in keeping with the humanitarian interests of the United 
States.


Risks:


In the case of witness tampering, obstruction of justice, or perjury, 
the interpretive challenge for USCIS was to determine whom the BIWPA 
was meant to protect, given that these criminal activities are not 
targeted against a person. Accordingly it was determined that a victim 
of witness tampering, obstruction of justice, or perjury is an alien 
who has been directly and proximately harmed by the perpetrator of one 
of these three crimes, where there are reasonable grounds to conclude 
that the perpetrator principally committed the offense as a means: (1) 
to avoid or frustrate efforts to investigate, arrest, prosecute, or 
otherwise bring him or her to justice for other criminal activity; or 
(2) to further his or her abuse or exploitation of, or undue control 
over, the alien through manipulation of the legal system.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              09/17/07                    72 FR 53013
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   10/17/07
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          11/17/07
Interim Final Rule              09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State


Additional Information:


Transferred from RIN 1115-AG39


Agency Contact:
Laura M. Dawkins
Chief, Family Immigration and Victim Protection Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Suite 1200
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-1470
Fax: 202 272-1480
Email: laura.dawkins@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AA67
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

69. E-2 NONIMMIGRANT STATUS FOR ALIENS IN THE COMMONWEALTH OF THE 
NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS WITH LONG-TERM INVESTOR STATUS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1101 to 1103; 8 USC 1182; 8 USC 1184; 8 USC 1186a

[[Page 79550]]

CFR Citation:


8 CFR 214


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This final rule amends Department of Homeland Security regulations 
governing E-2 nonimmigrant treaty investors to establish procedures for 
classifying long-term investors in the Commonwealth of the Northern 
Mariana Islands (CNMI) as E-2 nonimmigrants. This final rule implements 
the CNMI nonimmigrant investor visa provisions of the Consolidated 
Natural Resources Act of 2008, extending the immigration laws of the 
United States to the CNMI.


Statement of Need:


This final rule responds to a congressional mandate that requires the 
Federal Government to assume responsibility for visas for entry to CNMI 
by foreign investors.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Public Costs: This rule reduces the employer's annual cost by $200 per 
year ($500-$300), plus any further reduction caused by eliminating the 
paperwork burden associated with the CNMI's process. In 2006 to 2007, 
there were 464 long-term business entry permit holders and 20 perpetual 
foreign investor entry permit holders and retiree investor permit 
holders, totaling 484, or approximately 500 foreign registered 
investors. The total savings to employers from this rule is thus 
expected to be $100,000 per year ($500 x $200). Cost to the Federal 
Government: The yearly Federal Government cost is estimated at $42,310.


Benefits: The potential abuse of the visa system by those seeking to 
illegally emigrate from the CNMI to Guam or elsewhere in the United 
States reduces the integrity of the United States immigration system by 
increasing the ease by which aliens may unlawfully enter the United 
States through the CNMI. Federal oversight and regulations of CNMI 
foreign investors should help reduce abuse by foreign employees in the 
CNMI, and should help reduce the opportunity for aliens to use the CNMI 
as an entry point into the United States.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/14/09                    74 FR 46938
NPRM Comment Period End         10/14/09
Final Action                    12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Additional Information:


CIS No. 2458-08


Agency Contact:
Kevin J. Cummings
Chief of Business and Foreign Workers Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Office of Policy and Strategy
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20529-2140
Phone: 202 272-8410
Fax: 202 272-1542
Email: kevin.cummings@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AB75
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

70. COMMONWEALTH OF THE NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS TRANSITIONAL WORKER 
CLASSIFICATION

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 110-229


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 214.2


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is creating a new, temporary, 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI)-only transitional 
worker classification (CW classification) in accordance with title VII 
of the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008 (CNRA). The 
transitional worker program is intended to provide for an orderly 
transition from the CNMI permit system to the U.S. Federal immigration 
system under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). A CW 
transitional worker is an alien worker who is ineligible for another 
classification under the INA and who performs services or labor for an 
employer in the CNMI. The CNRA imposes a 5-year transition period 
before the INA requirements become fully applicable in the CNMI. The 
new CW classification will be in effect for the duration of that 
transition period, unless extended by the Secretary of Labor. The rule 
also establishes employment authorization incident to CW status.


Statement of Need:


Title VII of the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008 (CNRA) 
created a new, temporary, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands 
(CNMI)-only transitional worker classification. The transitional worker 
program is intended to provide for an orderly transition from the CNMI 
permit system to the U.S. Federal immigration system under the 
Immigration and Nationality Act.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Each of the estimated 22,000 CNMI transitional workers will be required 
to pay a $320 fee per year, for an annualized cost to the affected 
public of $7 million. However, since these workers will not have to pay 
CNMI fees, the total present value costs of this rule are a net cost 
savings ranging from $9.8 million to $13.4 million depending on the 
validity period of CW status (1 or 2 years), whether out-of-status 
aliens present in the CNMI are eligible for CW status, and the discount 
rate applied. The intended benefits of the rule include improvements in 
national and homeland security and protection of human rights.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              10/27/09                    74 FR 55094
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          11/27/09
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End 
    Extended                    12/09/09                    74 FR 64997
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          01/08/10
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


State

[[Page 79551]]

Agency Contact:
Kevin J. Cummings
Chief of Business and Foreign Workers Division
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Office of Policy and Strategy
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20529-2140
Phone: 202 272-8410
Fax: 202 272-1542
Email: kevin.cummings@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AB76
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCIS

<###DOC>

71. APPLICATION OF IMMIGRATION REGULATIONS TO THE COMMONWEALTH OF THE 
NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 110-229


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 208 and 209; 8 CFR 214 and 215; 8 CFR 217; 8 CFR 235; 8 CFR 248; 
8 CFR 264; 8 CFR 274a


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 28, 2009, Consolidated Natural Resources Act 
(CNRA) of 2008.


Abstract:


On October 28, 2009, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the 
Department of Justice (DOJ) published a joint interim final rule in the 
Federal Register implementing conforming amendments to their respective 
regulations to comply with the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 
2008 (CNRA). The CNRA extends the immigration laws of the United States 
to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI). This rule 
finalizes the interim rule with additional changes to provisions 
concerning adjustment of status and change of status of aliens in the 
CNMI, immigrant petitions for multinational executives, acceptable 
documents for employment eligibility verification (Form I-9), and the 
Northern Marianas identification card. It is intended that such changes 
will ameliorate any adverse impact that implementation of the CNRA may 
have on CNMI employers and alien workers.


Statement of Need:


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice 
(DOJ) are implementing conforming amendments to their respective 
regulations to comply with the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 
2008 (CNRA). The CNRA extends the immigration laws of the United States 
to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI). This rule 
amends the regulations governing: Asylum and credible fear of 
persecution determinations; references to the geographical ``United 
States'' and its territories and possessions; alien classifications 
authorized for employment; documentation acceptable for Employment 
Eligibility Verification; employment of unauthorized aliens; and 
adjustment of status of immediate relatives admitted under the Guam-
CNMI Visa Waiver Program. Additionally, this rule makes a technical 
change to correct a citation error in the regulations governing the 
Visa Waiver Program and the regulations governing asylum and 
withholding of removal.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The stated goals of the CNRA are to ensure effective border control 
procedures, to properly address national security and homeland security 
concerns by extending U.S. immigration law to the CNMI, and to maximize 
the CNMI's potential for future economic and business growth. While 
those goals are expected to be partly facilitated by the changes made 
in this rule, they are general and qualitative in nature. There are no 
specific changes made by this rule with sufficiently identifiable 
direct or indirect economic impacts so as to be quantified.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              10/28/09                    74 FR 55725
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          11/27/09
Correction                      12/22/09                    74 FR 67969
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


CIS 2460-08


Agency Contact:
Kevin Cummings
Branch Chief, Business and Trade Services
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Second Floor
Office of Program and Regulations Development
20 Massachusetts Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20529
Phone: 202 272-8412
Fax: 202 272-1452
Email: kevin.cummings@dhs.gov
RIN: 1615-AB77
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--U.S. Coast Guard (USCG)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

72. OUTER CONTINENTAL SHELF ACTIVITIES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


43 USC 1333(d)(1); 43 USC 1348(c); 43 USC 1356; DHS Delegation No 
0170.1


CFR Citation:


33 CFR 140 to 147


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Coast Guard is the lead Federal agency for workplace safety and 
health, other than for matters generally related to drilling and 
production that are regulated by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, 
Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE) on facilities and vessels engaged 
in the exploration for, or development or production of, minerals on 
the OCS. This project would revise the regulations on Outer Continental 
Shelf (OCS) activities to: 1) Add new requirements for fixed OCS 
facilities for lifesaving, fire protection, training, hazardous 
materials used as stores and accommodation spaces; and 2) address 
foreign vessels engaged in OCS activities to comply with requirements 
similar to those imposed on U.S. vessels similarly engaged. This 
project would affect the owners and operators of facilities and vessels 
engaged in offshore activities.


Statement of Need:


The last major revision of Coast Guard OCS regulations occurred in 
1982. At

[[Page 79552]]

that time, the offshore industry was not as technologically advanced as 
it is today. Offshore activities were in relatively shallow water near 
land, where help was readily available during emergency situations. The 
equipment regulations required only basic equipment, primarily for 
lifesaving appliances and hand-held portable fire extinguishers. Since 
1982, the requirements in 33 CFR chapter I, subchapter N, have not kept 
pace with the changing offshore technology or the safety problems 
created as OCS activities extend to deeper water (10,000 feet) and move 
farther offshore (150 miles). This rulemaking reassesses all of our 
current OCS regulations in order to help make the OCS a safer 
workplace.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The authority for the Coast Guard to prescribe, change, revise, or 
amend these regulations is provided under 14 U.S.C. 85; 43 U.S.C. 
1333(d)(1), 1347(c), 1348(c), 1356; and Department of Homeland Security 
Delegation No. 0170.1. Section 145.100 also issued under 14 U.S.C. 664 
and 31 U.S.C. 9701.


Alternatives:


The Coast Guard considered filling the shortfall in existing OCS 
regulations by extending the current vessel and Mobile Offshore 
Drilling Unit regulations. This approach was rejected after concluding 
that the differences between fixed and floating units made this 
approach impractical. We also considered requiring compliance with 
industry standards. Those standards, though, do not cover all of the 
areas needing regulation. The new rule would adopt available consensus 
standards where appropriate.


Nonregulatory alternatives, such as agency policy documents and 
voluntary acceptance of industry standards were also considered. They 
were also rejected because enforceable regulations are necessary in 
order to carry out the relevant statutes.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Coast Guard is currently estimating the costs and benefits 
associated with this rulemaking. Industry would incur additional costs 
as a result of provisions for training, firefighting, lifesaving, and 
monitoring of unsafe conditions. This proposed rule supports the 
Commandant's strategic goals of marine safety and environmental 
stewardship and is designed to help make the OCS a safer workplace by 
preventing accidents or reducing the consequences of accidents on the 
OCS. In addition, the proposed rule will include measures that meet the 
changing offshore technology and the safety problems it creates as OCS 
activities extend to deeper water and move farther offshore.


Risks:


The extensive revisions to health and safety requirements for OCS units 
in this rule would substantially reduce the risk of injury or illness 
on those units.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Request for Comments            06/27/95                    60 FR 33185
Comment Period End              09/25/95
NPRM                            12/07/99                    64 FR 68416
NPRM Correction                 02/22/00                     65 FR 8671
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    03/16/00                    65 FR 14226
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    06/30/00                    65 FR 40559
NPRM Comment Period End         11/30/00
Supplemental NPRM               08/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


Docket Numbers: The notice of request for comments published June 27, 
1995, was assigned Coast Guard docket number 95-016. Following the 
request for comments, that docket was terminated. This project 
continues under Docket No. USCG-1998-3868 and RIN 1625-AA18. This 
docket may be viewed online by going to www.regulations.gov.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Kevin Y. Pekarek
Program Manager
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
Commandant, CG-5222
2100 2nd Street SW., STOP 7126
Washington, DC 20593-7126
Phone: 202 372-1386
Email: kevin.y.pekarek2@uscg.mil
RIN: 1625-AA18
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCG

<###DOC>

73. INSPECTION OF TOWING VESSELS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


46 USC 3103; 46 USC 3301; 46 USC 3306; 46 USC 3308; 46 USC 3316; 46 USC 
3703; 46 USC 8104; 46 USC 8904; DHS Delegation No 0170.1


CFR Citation:


46 CFR 2; 46 CFR 15; 46 CFR 136 to 144


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, January 13, 2011.


On October 15, 2010, the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2010 was 
enacted as Public Law 111-281. It requires that a proposed rule be 
issued within 90 days after enactment and that a final rule be issued 
within 1 year of enactment.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would implement a program of inspection for 
certification of towing vessels, which were previously uninspected. It 
would prescribe standards for safety management systems and third-party 
auditors and surveyors, along with standards for construction, 
operation, vessel systems, safety equipment, and recordkeeping.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking would implement sections 409 and 415 of the Coast Guard 
and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004. The intent of the proposed 
rule is to promote safer work practices and reduce casualties on towing 
vessels by ensuring that towing vessels adhere to prescribed safety 
standards and safety management systems. This proposed rule was 
developed in cooperation with the Towing Vessel Safety Advisory 
Committee. It would establish a new subchapter dedicated to towing 
vessels; covering vessel equipment, systems, operational standards, and 
inspection requirements.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Proposed new subchapter authority: 46 U.S.C. 3103, 3301, 3306, 3308, 
3316, 8104, 8904; 33 CFR 1.05; DHS Delegation 0170.1.


The Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 (CGMTA 2004), 
Public Law 108-293, 118 Stat. 1028, (Aug. 9, 2004), established new

[[Page 79553]]

authorities for towing vessels as follows:


Section 415 added towing vessels, as defined in section 2101 of title 
46, United States Code (U.S.C.), as a class of vessels that are subject 
to safety inspections under chapter 33 of that title (Id. at 1047).


Section 415 also added new section 3306(j) of title 46, authorizing the 
Secretary of Homeland Security to establish, by regulation, a safety 
management system appropriate for the characteristics, methods of 
operation, and nature of service of towing vessels (Id.).


Section 409 added new section 8904(c) of title 46, U.S.C., authorizing 
the Secretary to establish, by regulation, ``maximum hours of service 
(including recording and recordkeeping of that service) of individuals 
engaged on a towing vessel that is at least 26 feet in length measured 
from end to end over the deck (excluding the sheer).`` (Id. at 1044-
45).


Alternatives:


We considered the following alternatives for the notice of proposed 
rulemaking (NPRM):


One regulatory alternative would be the addition of towing vessels to 
one or more existing subchapters that deal with other inspected 
vessels, such as cargo and miscellaneous vessels (subchapter I), 
offshore supply vessels (subchapter L), or small passenger vessels 
(subchapter T). We do not believe, however, that this approach would 
recognize the often ``unique'' nature and characteristics of the towing 
industry in general and towing vessels in particular.


In addition to inclusion in a particular existing subchapter (or 
subchapters) for equipment-related concerns, the same approach could be 
adopted for use of a safety management system by requiring compliance 
with title 33, Code of Federal Regulations, part 96 (Rules for the Safe 
Operation of Vessels and Safety Management Systems). Adoption of these 
requirements, without an alternative safety management system, would 
also not be ``appropriate for the characteristics, methods of 
operation, and nature of service of towing vessels.``


The Coast Guard has had extensive public involvement (four public 
meetings, over 100 separate comments submitted to the docket, as well 
as extensive ongoing dialogue with members of the Towing Safety 
Advisory Committee (TSAC)) regarding development of these regulations. 
Adoption of one of the alternatives discussed above would likely 
receive little public or industry support, especially considering the 
TSAC efforts toward development of standards to be incorporated into a 
separate subchapter dealing specifically with the inspection of towing 
vessels.


An approach that would seem to be more in keeping with the intent of 
Congress would be the adoption of certain existing standards from those 
applied to other inspected vessels. In some cases, these existing 
standards would be appropriately modified and tailored to the nature 
and operation of certain categories of towing vessels. The adopted 
standards would come from inspected vessels that have demonstrated 
``good marine practice'' within the maritime community. These 
regulations would be incorporated into a subchapter specifically 
addressing the inspection for certification of towing vessels. The law 
requiring the inspection for certification of towing vessels is a 
statutory mandate, compelling the Coast Guard to develop regulations 
appropriate for the nature of towing vessels and their specific 
industry.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


We estimate that owners and operators of towing vessels would incur 
additional costs from this rulemaking. The cost of this rulemaking 
would involve provisions for safety management systems, standards for 
construction, operation, vessel systems, safety equipment, and 
recordkeeping. Our cost assessment includes existing and new vessels. 
We are currently developing cost estimates for the proposed rule.


The Coast Guard developed the requirements in the proposed rule by 
researching both the human factors and equipment failures that caused 
towing vessel accidents. We believe that the proposed rule would 
address a wide range of causes of towing vessel accidents and supports 
the main goal of improving safety in the towing industry. The primary 
benefit of the proposed rule is an increase in vessel safety and a 
resulting decrease in the risk of towing vessel accidents and their 
consequences.


Risks:


This regulatory action would reduce the risk of towing vessel accidents 
and their consequences. Towing vessel accidents result in fatalities, 
injuries, property damage, pollution, and delays.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


State


Additional Information:


The Regulations.gov docket number is USCG-2006-24412.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Michael Harmon
Program Manager, CG-5222
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
2100 2nd Street SW., STOP 7126
Washington, DC 20593-7126
Phone: 202 372-1427
Email: michael.j.harmon@uscg.mil
RIN: 1625-AB06
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCG

<###DOC>

74. ASSESSMENT FRAMEWORK AND ORGANIZATIONAL RESTATEMENT REGARDING 
PREEMPTION FOR CERTAIN REGULATIONS ISSUED BY THE COAST GUARD

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


14 USC 2; 14 USC 91; 33 USC 1223; 33 USC 1231; 33 USC 1903(b); 46 USC 
3203; 46 USC 3306; 46 USC 3703; 46 USC 3717; 46 USC 4302; 46 USC 6101; 
DHS Delegation No 0170.1


CFR Citation:


33 CFR 1.06


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The proposed rule will operate in two ways. First, it will describe the 
Coast Guard's interpretation of the preemptive effect of certain 
current Coast Guard regulations. This analysis will apply to previously 
promulgated

[[Page 79554]]

regulations even if a complete description of federalism implications 
was clearly articulated in the development of the regulation. Second, 
the rule will set forth criteria and a process that the Coast Guard 
will undertake in future regulatory projects for evaluating the 
preemptive impact of those regulations. This part of the analysis is 
prospective in nature and will lay out a roadmap for future regulatory 
projects regarding federalism and preemption principles. This 
rulemaking will support the Coast Guard's broad role and responsibility 
of further enhancing maritime stewardship by reinforcing a uniform 
maritime regulatory regime that is predictable and useful for maritime 
interests.


Statement of Need:


In light of recent Federal court cases and the President's May 20, 
2009, memorandum regarding preemption, the Coast Guard believes that a 
clear agency statement of the preemptive impact of our regulations, 
particularly those regulations issued prior to the promulgation of E.O. 
13132, can be of great benefit to State and local governments, the 
public, and regulated entities. Therefore, the Coast Guard intends to 
issue a general statement of preemption policy, coupled with specific 
statements of policy regarding regulations issued under the authority 
of statutes with preemptive effect, including, among others, the Ports 
and Waterways Safety Act (PWSA) of 1972, as amended (33 U.S.C. 1221 et. 
seq.). The Coast Guard proposes to publish these policies in a new 
section 1.06 of title 33 of the Code of Federal Regulations, to allow 
for easy access by interested persons and parties.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The statutory authorities for the Coast Guard to prescribe, change, 
revise, or amend these regulations are provided under 14 U.S.C. 2 and 
91; 33 U.S.C. 1223, 1231, and 1903(b); 46 U.S.C. 3203, 3306, 3703, 
3717, 4302, and 6101; and Department of Homeland Security Delegation 
No. 0170.1.


Alternatives:


The Coast Guard considered alternative mechanisms for restating the 
preemptive effect of regulations, including the use of a notice of 
policy. These methods would not provide the same level of transparency 
as codification in the Code of Federal Regulations, however, because 
they would not be as readily located by State and local government or 
other members of the public. They also would not satisfy the 
President's May 20, 2009, memorandum regarding preemption, which 
directs agencies to include preemption provisions in the codified 
regulation.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


We expect no additional cost impacts to the industry from this proposed 
rule, because it only restates and clarifies the status of Federal and 
State law as it exists.


Risks:


Not applicable to this rulemaking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


The docket number for this rulemaking is USCG-2008-1259. The docket can 
be found at www.regulations.gov.


URL For More Information:
http://www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
http://www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
LCDR Stephen DaPonte
Program Manager
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
Commandant (CG-0941)
2100 2nd Street SW., STOP 7121
Washington, DC 20593-7121
Phone: 202 372-3865
Email: stephen.daponte@uscg.mil
RIN: 1625-AB32
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCG

<###DOC>

75. UPDATES TO MARITIME SECURITY

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


33 USC 1226; 33 USC 1231; 46 USC ch 701; 50 USC 191 and 192; EO 12656; 
3 CFR 1988 Comp, p 585; 33 CFR 1.05-1; 33 CFR 6.04-11; 33 CFR 6.14; 33 
CFR 6.16; 33 CFR 6.19; DHS Delegation No 0170.1


CFR Citation:


33 CFR subchapter H


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Coast Guard proposes certain additions, changes, and amendments to 
33 CFR, subchapter H. Subchapter H is comprised of parts 101 thru 106. 
Subchapter H implements the major provisions of the Maritime 
Transportation Security Act of 2002. This rulemaking is the first major 
revision to subchapter H. The proposed changes would further enhance 
the security of our Nation's ports, vessels, facilities, and Outer 
Continental Shelf facilities and incorporate requirements from 
legislation implemented since the original publication of these 
regulations in 2003. This rulemaking has international interest because 
of the close relationship between subchapter H and the International 
Ship and Port Security Code (ISPS).


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking is needed to incorporate Coast Guard Policy Advisory 
Council (PAC) decisions on the interpretation of regulations, guidance 
provided in response to questions to the Maritime Transportation 
Security Act of 2002 (MTSA) hotline, and to implement various 
requirements found in the Security and Accountability for Every Port 
Act of 2006 and the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 
2006. In addition, this rulemaking is needed to incorporate 
recommendations from the Merchant Marine Personnel Advisory Committee. 
It also incorporates various U.S. Maritime Administration and 
International Maritime Organization voluntary consensus standards 
related to maritime security training.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The fundamental legal basis for subchapter H remains the Maritime 
Transportation Security Act of 2002 as amended by the Security and 
Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 and the Coast Guard and 
Maritime Transportation Act of 2006.


Alternatives:


The Coast Guard is currently evaluating a number of alternatives based 
on applicability and risk (threat,

[[Page 79555]]

vulnerability, and consequence). However, an overall update to make 
necessary changes to subchapter H and address improvements resulting 
from our experience since 2003 is prudent.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Coast Guard is currently estimating the costs associated with this 
rulemaking. Industry would incur additional costs as a result of 
provisions for standardized training requirements, updates to security 
plans and other documentation, and full-scale exercises requirements 
for high-risk facilities. The potential benefit from these provisions 
is reduction in risk of security incidents. This rulemaking expands and 
improves competencies associated with Maritime Domain Awareness (MDA). 
MDA is the effective understanding of anything associated with the 
global maritime domain that could impact the United States' security, 
safety, economy, or environment. The proposed rule would improve MDA 
through training, exercise, and security plan enhancements. As a 
result, the primary benefit of the proposed rule would result from 
reducing the risk of a Transportation Security Incident (TSI) and 
therefore averting or mitigating the economic and environmental 
consequences of a TSI.


Risks:


With this rulemaking, the Coast Guard seeks to maintain the risk 
reduction goals established with the promulgation of the original MTSA 
regulations and further reduce risks by incorporating provisions 
related to more recent legislation and warranted by our experience with 
subchapter H since 2003.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


The Regulations.gov docket number for this rulemaking is USCG-2007-
0009.


URL For More Information:
http://www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
http://www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
LCDR Loan O'Brien
Project Manager
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
Commandant, (CG-5442)
2100 2nd Street SW., STOP 7581
Washington, DC 20593-7581
Phone: 877 687-2243
Fax: 202 372-1906
Email: loan.t.o'brien@uscg.mil
RIN: 1625-AB38
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCG

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

76. STANDARDS FOR LIVING ORGANISMS IN SHIPS' BALLAST WATER DISCHARGED 
IN U.S. WATERS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


16 USC 4711


CFR Citation:


33 CFR 151


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking adds performance standards to 33 CFR part 151, subparts 
C and D, for discharges of ballast water. It supports the Coast Guard's 
broad roles and responsibilities of maritime safety and maritime 
stewardship. This project is economically significant.


Statement of Need:


The unintentional introduction of nonindigenous species into U.S. 
waters via the discharge of vessels' ballast water has had significant 
impacts to the Nation's aquatic resources, biological diversity, and 
coastal infrastructures. This rulemaking would amend the ballast water 
management requirements (33 CFR part 151, subparts C and D) and 
establish standards that specify the level of biological treatment that 
must be achieved by a ballast water treatment system before ballast 
water can be discharged into U.S. waters. This would increase the Coast 
Guard's ability to protect U.S. waters against the introduction of 
nonindigenous species via ballast water discharges.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Congress has directed the Coast Guard to develop ballast water 
regulations to prevent the introduction of nonindigenous species into 
U.S. waters under the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and 
Control Act of 1990 and reauthorized and amended it with the National 
Invasive Species Act of 1996. This rulemaking does not have a statutory 
deadline.


Alternatives:


The Coast Guard would use the standard rulemaking process to develop 
regulations for ballast water discharge standards. Nonregulatory 
alternatives such as navigation and vessel inspection circulars and the 
Marine Safety Manual have been considered and may be used for the 
development of policy and directives to provide the maritime industry 
and our field offices guidelines for implementation of the regulations. 
Nonregulatory alternatives cannot be substituted for the standards we 
would develop with this rule. Congress has directed the Coast Guard to 
review and revise its BWM regulations not less than every 3 years based 
on the best scientific information available to the Coast Guard at the 
time of that review.


On August 28, 2009, the Coast Guard published the Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking (NPRM) entitled Standards for Living Organisms in Ships' 
Ballast Water Discharged in U.S. Waters in the Federal Register (74 FR 
44632). The proposed rule included a phase-in schedule (phase-one and 
phase-two) for the implementation of ballast water discharge standards 
based on vessel's ballast water capacity and build date (one that is 
one thousand times more stringent). The proposed phase-one standard is 
the same standard adopted by the International Maritime Organization 
(IMO) for concentration of living organisms in ballast water 
discharges. For phase-two, we propose incorporating a practicability 
review to determine whether technology to achieve a more stringent 
standard than

[[Page 79556]]

the IMO standard can practicably be implemented.


Based on the comments received, we plan to move forward swiftly with a 
final rule.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


This rulemaking would affect certain vessels operating in U.S. waters 
seeking to discharge ballast water into waters of the United States. 
Owners and operators of these vessels would be required to install and 
operate Coast Guard approved ballast water management systems before 
discharging ballast water into U.S. waters. Cost estimates for 
individual vessels vary due to the vessel class, type and size, and the 
particular technology of the ballast water management system installed. 
We expect the highest annual costs of this rulemaking during the 
periods of installation as the bulk of the existing fleet of vessels 
must meet the standards according to proposed phase-in schedules. The 
primary cost driver of this rulemaking is the installation costs for 
existing vessels. Operating and maintenance costs are substantially 
less than the installation costs.


We evaluated the benefits of this rulemaking by researching the impact 
of aquatic nonindigenous species (NIS) invasions in the U.S. waters, 
since ballast water discharge is one of the main vectors of NIS 
introductions in the marine environment. The primary benefit of this 
rulemaking would be the economic and environmental damages avoided from 
the reduction in the number of new invasions as a result of the 
reduction in concentration of organisms in discharged ballast water. We 
expect that the benefits of this rulemaking would increase as the 
technology is developed to achieve more stringent ballast water 
discharge standards.


The Coast Guard issued a preliminary regulatory analysis of the costs, 
benefits, and other impacts of the 2009 NPRM. In this preliminary 
analysis, we estimated the total phase-one costs to be about $1.18 
billion over a 10-year period of analysis (this and other values below 
at a 7 percent discount rate). As previously described, the 
implementation costs vary by year. We estimated the annualized cost 
over the same period to be approximately $168 million per year. We did 
not provide cost estimates for the phase-two costs in this preliminary 
analysis since data and information was not available at that time for 
technology that would meet the anticipated phase-two standard (1,000 x 
the IMO standard). In the same preliminary analysis, we estimated 
annualized benefits (damages avoided) for phase one are potentially as 
high as $553 million, with a mid-range estimate of $165 million to $282 
million per year. We estimated total phase-one benefits to be as high 
as $3.88 billion, with a mid-range estimate of $1.16 billion to $1.98 
billion over a 10-year period of analysis.


The Coast Guard has received public comments on the impacts of the NPRM 
and will be incorporating these comments into a revised Regulatory 
Analysis for the next rulemaking publication.


Risks:


Ballast water discharged from ships is a significant pathway for the 
introduction and spread of non-indigenous aquatic nuisance species. 
These organisms, which may be plants, animals, bacteria or pathogens, 
have the potential to displace native species, degrade native habitats, 
spread disease and disrupt human economic and social activities that 
depend on water resources. It is estimated that for areas such as the 
Great Lakes, San Francisco Bay, and Chesapeake Bay, one nonindigenous 
species becomes established per year. At this time, it is difficult to 
estimate the reduction of risk that would be accomplished by 
promulgating this rulemaking; however, it is expected a major reduction 
will occur. We are currently requesting information on costs and 
benefits of more stringent ballast water discharge standards.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           03/04/02                     67 FR 9632
ANPRM Comment Period End        06/03/02
NPRM                            08/28/09                    74 FR 44632
Public Meeting                  09/14/09                    74 FR 46964
Public Meeting                  09/22/09                    74 FR 48190
Public Meeting                  09/28/09                    74 FR 49355
Notice--Extension of 
    Comment Period              10/15/09                    74 FR 52941
Public Meeting                  10/22/09                    74 FR 54533
Public Meeting Correction       10/26/09                    74 FR 54944
NPRM Comment Period End         12/04/09                    74 FR 52941
Final Rule                      04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


State


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


The Regulations.gov docket number for this rulemaking is USCG-2001-
10486.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Mr. John C Morris
Project Manager
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Coast Guard
2100 Second Street SW., STOP 7126
Washington, DC 20593-7126
Phone: 202 372-1433
Email: john.c.morris@uscg.mil
RIN: 1625-AA32
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--U.S. Customs and Border Protection (USCBP)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

77. IMPORTER SECURITY FILING AND ADDITIONAL CARRIER REQUIREMENTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


PL 109-347, sec 203; 5 USC 301; 19 USC 66; 19 USC 1431; 19 USC 1433 to 
1434; 19 USC 1624; 19 USC 2071 note; 46 USC 60105


CFR Citation:


19 CFR 4; 19 CFR 12.3; 19 CFR 18.5; 19 CFR 103.31a; 19 CFR 113; 19 CFR 
123.92; 19 CFR 141.113; 19 CFR 146.32; 19 CFR 149; 19 CFR 192.14


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This interim final rule implements the provisions of section 203 of the

[[Page 79557]]

Security and Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006. It amends CBP 
Regulations to require carriers and importers to provide to CBP, via a 
CBP-approved electronic data interchange system, information necessary 
to enable CBP to identify high-risk shipments to prevent smuggling and 
insure cargo safety and security. Under the rule, importers and 
carriers must submit specified information to CBP before the cargo is 
brought into the United States by vessel. This advance information will 
improve CBP's risk assessment and targeting capabilities, assist CBP in 
increasing the security of the global trading system, and facilitate 
the prompt release of legitimate cargo following its arrival in the 
United States.


Statement of Need:


Vessel carriers are currently required to transmit certain manifest 
information by way of the CBP Vessel Automated Manifest System (AMS) 24 
hours prior to lading of containerized and non-exempt break bulk cargo 
at a foreign port. For the most part, this is the ocean carrier's or 
non-vessel operating common carrier (NVOCC)'s cargo declaration. CBP 
analyzes this information to generate its risk assessment for targeting 
purposes.


Internal and external government reviews have concluded that more 
complete advance shipment data would produce even more effective and 
vigorous cargo risk assessments. In addition, pursuant to section 203 
of the Security and Accountability for Every Port Act of 2006 (Pub. L. 
109-347, 6 U.S.C. 943) (SAFE Port Act), the Secretary of Homeland 
Security, acting through the Commissioner of CBP, must promulgate 
regulations to require the electronic transmission of additional data 
elements for improved high-risk targeting, including appropriate 
security elements of entry data for cargo destined to the United States 
by vessel prior to loading of such cargo on vessels at foreign 
seaports.


Based upon its analysis, as well as the requirements under the SAFE 
Port Act, CBP is requiring the electronic transmission of additional 
data for improved high-risk targeting. Some of these data elements are 
being required from carriers (Container Status Messages and Vessel Stow 
Plan) and others are being required from ``importers,'' as that term is 
defined for purposes of the regulations.


This rule intends to improve CBP's risk assessment and targeting 
capabilities and enables the agency to facilitate the prompt release of 
legitimate cargo following its arrival in the United States. The 
information will assist CBP in increasing the security of the global 
trading system and, thereby, reducing the threat to the United States 
and world economy.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Pursuant to section 203 of the Security and Accountability for Every 
Port Act of 2006 (Pub. L. 109-347, 6 U.S.C. 943) (SAFE Port Act), the 
Secretary of Homeland Security, acting through the Commissioner of CBP, 
must promulgate regulations to require the electronic transmission of 
additional data elements for improved high-risk targeting, including 
appropriate security elements of entry data for cargo destined to the 
United States by vessel prior to loading of such cargo on vessels at 
foreign seaports.


Alternatives:


CBP considered and evaluated the following four alternatives:


Alternative 1 (the chosen alternative): Importer Security Filings and 
Additional Carrier Requirements are required. Bulk cargo is exempt from 
the Importer Security Filing requirements;


Alternative 2: Importer Security Filings and Additional Carrier 
Requirements are required. Bulk cargo is not exempt from the Importer 
Security Filing requirements;


Alternative 3: Only Importer Security Filings are required. Bulk cargo 
is exempt from the Importer Security Filing requirements; and


Alternative 4: Only the Additional Carrier Requirements are required.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


When the NPRM was published, CBP estimated that approximately 11 
million import shipments conveyed by 1,000 different carrier companies 
operating 37,000 unique voyages or vessel-trips to the United States 
will be subject to the rule. Annualized costs range from $890 million 
to $7.0 billion (7 percent discount rate over 10 years).


The annualized cost range results from varying assumptions about the 
importers' estimated security filing transaction costs or fees charged 
to the importers by the filing parties, the potential for supply chain 
delays, and the estimated costs to carriers for transmitting additional 
data to CBP.


The regulation may increase the time shipments are in transit, 
particularly for shipments consolidated in containers. For such 
shipments, the supply chain is generally more complex and the importer 
has less control of the flow of goods and associated security filing 
information. Foreign cargo consolidators may be consolidating multiple 
shipments from one or more shippers in a container destined for one or 
more buyers or consignees. In order to ensure that the security filing 
data is provided by the shippers to the importers (or their designated 
agents) and is then transmitted to and accepted by CBP in advance of 
the 24-hour deadline, consolidators may advance their cut-off times for 
receipt of shipments and associated security filing data.


These advanced cut-off times would help prevent a consolidator or 
carrier from having to unpack or unload a container in the event the 
security filing for one of the shipments contained in the container is 
inadequate or not accepted by CBP. For example, consolidators may 
require shippers to submit, transmit, or obtain CBP approval of their 
security filing data before their shipments are stuffed in the 
container, before the container is sealed, or before the container is 
delivered to the port for lading. In such cases, importers would likely 
have to increase the times they hold their goods as inventory, and thus 
incur additional inventory carrying costs to sufficiently meet these 
advanced cut-off times imposed by their foreign consolidators. The high 
end of the cost ranges presented assumes an initial supply chain delay 
of 2 days for the first year of implementation (2008) and a delay of 1 
day for years 2 through 10 (2009 to 2017).


Ideally, the quantification and monetization of the benefits of this 
regulation would involve estimating the current level of risk of a 
successful terrorist attack, absent this regulation, and the 
incremental reduction in risk resulting from implementation of the 
regulation. CBP would then multiply the change by an estimate of the 
value individuals place on such a risk reduction to produce a monetary 
estimate of direct benefits. However, existing data limitations and a 
lack of complete understanding of the true risks posed by terrorists 
prevent us from establishing the incremental risk reduction 
attributable to this rule. As a result, CBP has undertaken a ``break-
even'' analysis to inform decisionmakers of the necessary incremental 
change in the probability of such an event occurring that would result 
in direct benefits equal to the costs of the proposed rule. CBP's

[[Page 79558]]

analysis finds that the incremental costs of this regulation are 
relatively small compared to the median value of a shipment of goods, 
despite the rather large absolute estimate of present value cost.


The benefit of this rule is the improvement of CBP's risk assessment 
and targeting capabilities, while at the same time, enabling CBP to 
facilitate the prompt release of legitimate cargo following its arrival 
in the United States. The information will assist CBP in increasing the 
security of the global trading system, and thereby reducing the threat 
to the United States and the world economy.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/02/08                       73 FR 90
NPRM Comment Period End         03/03/08
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    02/01/08                     73 FR 6061
NPRM Comment Period End         03/18/08
Interim Final Rule              11/25/08                    73 FR 71730
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   01/26/09
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          06/01/09
Correction                      07/14/09                    74 FR 33920
Correction                      12/24/09                    74 FR 68376
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Richard DiNucci
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
Office of Field Operations
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20229
Phone: 202 344-2513
Email: richard.dinucci@dhs.gov
RIN: 1651-AA70
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCBP

<###DOC>

78. CHANGES TO THE VISA WAIVER PROGRAM TO IMPLEMENT THE ELECTRONIC 
SYSTEM FOR TRAVEL AUTHORIZATION (ESTA) PROGRAM

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1103; 8 USC 1187; 8 CFR 2


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 217.5


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rule implements the Electronic System for Travel Authorization 
(ESTA) for aliens who travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver 
Program (VWP) at air or sea ports of entry. Under the rule, VWP 
travelers are required to provide certain biographical information to 
CBP electronically before departing for the United States. This allows 
CBP to determine before their departure whether these travelers are 
eligible to travel to the United States under the VWP and whether such 
travel poses a security risk. The rule is intended to fulfill the 
requirements of section 711 of the Implementing recommendations of the 
9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (9/11 Act). In addition to fulfilling a 
statutory mandate, the rule serves the twin goals of promoting border 
security and legitimate travel to the United States. By modernizing the 
VWP, the ESTA is intended to increase national security and to provide 
for greater efficiencies in the screening of international travelers by 
allowing for vetting of subjects of potential interest well before 
boarding, thereby reducing traveler delays at the ports of entry.


Statement of Need:


Section 711 of the 9/11 Act requires the Secretary of Homeland 
Security, in consultation with the Secretary of State, to develop and 
implement a fully automated electronic travel authorization system that 
will collect biographical and other information in advance of travel to 
determine the eligibility of the alien to travel to the United States, 
and to determine whether such travel poses a law enforcement or 
security risk. ESTA is intended to fulfill these statutory 
requirements.


Under this rule, VWP travelers provide certain information to CBP 
electronically before departing for the United States. VWP travelers 
who receive travel authorization under ESTA are not required to 
complete the paper Form I-94W when arriving on a carrier that is 
capable of receiving and validating messages pertaining to the 
traveler's ESTA status as part of the traveler's boarding status. By 
automating the I-94W process and establishing a system to provide VWP 
traveler data in advance of travel, CBP is able to determine the 
eligibility of citizens and eligible nationals from VWP countries to 
travel to the United States and to determine whether such travel poses 
a law enforcement or security risk, before such individuals begin 
travel to the United States. ESTA provides for greater efficiencies in 
the screening of international travelers by allowing CBP to identify 
subjects of potential interest before they depart for the United 
States, thereby increasing security and reducing traveler delays upon 
arrival at U.S. ports of entry.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The ESTA program is based on congressional authority provided under 
section 711 of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission 
Act of 2007 and section 217 of the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(INA).


Alternatives:


CBP considered three alternatives to this rule:


1. The ESTA requirements in the rule, but with a $1.50 fee per each 
travel authorization (more costly)


2. The ESTA requirements in the rule, but with only the name of the 
passenger and the admissibility questions on the I-94W form (less 
burdensome)


3. The ESTA requirements in the rule, but only for the countries 
entering the VWP after 2009 (no new requirements for VWP, reduced 
burden for newly entering countries)


CBP determined that the rule provides the greatest level of enhanced 
security and efficiency at an acceptable cost to traveling public and 
potentially affected air carriers.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The purpose of ESTA is to allow DHS and CBP to establish the 
eligibility of certain foreign travelers to travel to the United States 
under the VWP, and whether the alien's proposed travel to the United 
States poses a law enforcement or security risk. Upon review of such 
information, DHS will

[[Page 79559]]

determine whether the alien is eligible to travel to the United States 
under the VWP.


Costs to Air & Sea Carriers


CBP estimated that eight U.S.-based air carriers and eleven sea 
carriers will be affected by the rule. An additional 35 foreign-based 
air carriers and five sea carriers will be affected. CBP concluded that 
costs to air and sea carriers to support the requirements of the ESTA 
program could cost $137 million to $1.1 billion over the next 10 years 
depending on the level of effort required to integrate their systems 
with ESTA, how many passengers they need to assist in applying for 
travel authorizations, and the discount rate applied to annual costs.


Costs to Travelers


ESTA will present new costs and burdens to travelers in VWP countries 
who were not previously required to submit any information to the U.S. 
Government in advance of travel to the United States. Travelers from 
Roadmap countries who become VWP countries will also incur costs and 
burdens, though these are much less than obtaining a nonimmigrant visa 
(category B1/B2), which is currently required for short-term pleasure 
or business to travel to the United States. CBP estimated that the 
total quantified costs to travelers will range from $1.1 billion to 
$3.5 billion depending on the number of travelers, the value of time, 
and the discount rate. Annualized costs are estimated to range from 
$133 million to $366 million.


Benefits


As set forth in section 711 of the 9/11 Act, it was the intent of 
Congress to modernize and strengthen the security of the Visa Waiver 
Program under section 217 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA, 
8 U.S.C. 1187) by simultaneously enhancing program security 
requirements and extending visa-free travel privileges to citizens and 
eligible nationals of eligible foreign countries that are partners in 
the war on terrorism.


By requiring passenger data in advance of travel, CBP may be able to 
determine, before the alien departs for the United States, the 
eligibility of citizens and eligible nationals from VWP countries to 
travel to the United States under the VWP, and whether such travel 
poses a law enforcement or security risk. In addition to fulfilling a 
statutory mandate, the rule serves the twin goals of promoting border 
security and legitimate travel to the United States. By modernizing the 
VWP, ESTA is intended to both increase national security and provide 
for greater efficiencies in the screening of international travelers by 
allowing for the screening of subjects of potential interest well 
before boarding, thereby reducing traveler delays based on potentially 
lengthy processes at U.S. ports of entry.


CBP concluded that the total benefits to travelers could total $1.1 
billion to $3.3 billion over the period of analysis. Annualized 
benefits could range from $134 million to $345 million.


In addition to these benefits to travelers, CBP and the carriers should 
also experience the benefit of not having to administer the I-94W 
except in limited situations. While CBP has not conducted an analysis 
of the potential savings, it should accrue benefits from not having to 
produce, ship, and store blank forms. CBP should also be able to accrue 
savings related to data entry and archiving. Carriers should realize 
some savings as well, though carriers will still have to administer the 
I-94 for those passengers not traveling under the VWP and the Customs 
Declaration forms for all passengers aboard the aircraft and vessel.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Action            06/09/08                    73 FR 32440
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   08/08/08
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          08/08/08
Notice - Announcing Date 
    Rule Becomes 
    Mandatory                   11/13/08                    73 FR 67354
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


http://www.cbp.gov/xp/cgov/travel/id--visa/esta/


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Suzanne Shepherd
Director, Electronic System for Travel Authorization
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20229
Phone: 202 344-2073
Email: cbp.esta@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1651-AA83
RIN: 1651-AA72
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCBP

<###DOC>

79. ESTABLISHMENT OF GLOBAL ENTRY PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1365b(k)(1); 8 USC 1365b(k)(3); 8 USC 1225; 8 USC 1185(b)


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 235; 8 CFR 103


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


CBP already operates several regulatory and non-regulatory 
international registered traveler programs, also known as trusted 
traveler programs. In order to comply with the Intelligence Reform 
Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRPTA), CBP is proposing to amend its 
regulations to establish another international registered traveler 
program called Global Entry. The Global Entry program would expedite 
the movement of low-risk, frequent international air travelers by 
providing an expedited inspection process for pre-approved, pre-
screened travelers. These travelers would proceed directly to automated 
Global Entry kiosks upon their arrival in the United States. This 
Global Entry Program, along with the other programs that have already 
been established, are consistent with CBP's strategic goal of 
facilitating legitimate trade and travel while securing the homeland. A 
pilot of Global Entry has been operating since June 6, 2008.


Statement of Need:


CBP has been operating the Global Entry program as a pilot at several 
airports since June 6, 2008, and the pilot has been very successful. As 
a result, there is a desire on the part of

[[Page 79560]]

the public that the program be established as a permanent program, and 
expanded, if possible. By establishing this program, CBP will make 
great strides toward facilitating the movement of people in a more 
efficient manner, thereby accomplishing our strategic goal of balancing 
legitimate travel with security. Through the use of biometric and 
recordkeeping technologies, the risk of terrorists entering the United 
States would be reduced. Improving security and facilitating travel at 
the border, both of which are accomplished by Global Entry, are primary 
concerns within CBP jurisdiction.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Global Entry program is based on section 7208(k) of the 
Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (IRTPA), as 
amended by section 565 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, which 
requires the Secretary of Homeland Security to create a program to 
expedite the screening and processing of pre-approved low risk air 
travelers into the United States.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Global Entry is a voluntary program that provides a benefit to the 
public by speeding the CBP processing time for participating travelers. 
Travelers who are otherwise admissible to the United States will be 
able to enter or exit the country regardless of whether they 
participate in Global Entry. CBP estimates that over a 5-year period, 
250,000 enrollees will be processed (an annual average of 50,000 
individuals). CBP will charge a fee of $100 per applicant and estimates 
that each application will require 40 minutes (0.67 hours) of the 
enrollee's time to search existing data resources, gather the data 
needed, and complete and review the application form. Additionally, an 
enrollee will experience an ``opportunity cost of time'' to travel to 
an Enrollment Center upon acceptance of the initial application. We 
assume that 1 hour will be required for this time spent at the 
Enrollment Center and travel to and from the Center, though we note 
that during the pilot program, many applicants coordinated their trip 
to an Enrollment Center with their travel at the airport. We have used 
one hour of travel time so as not to underestimate potential 
opportunity costs for enrolling in the program. We use a value of 
$28.60 for the opportunity cost for this time, which is taken from the 
Federal Aviation Administration's ``Economic Values for FAA Investment 
and Regulatory Decisions, A Guide.'' (July 3, 2007). This value is the 
weighted average for U.S. business and leisure travelers. For this 
evaluation, we assume that all enrollees will be U.S. citizens, U.S. 
nationals, or Lawful Permanent Residents.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            11/19/09                    74 FR 59932
NPRM Comment Period End         01/19/10
Final Rule                      02/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.globalentry.gov

Agency Contact:
John P. Wagner
Director, Trusted Traveler Programs
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
Office of Field Operations
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20229
Phone: 202 344-2118
RIN: 1651-AA73
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USCBP

<###DOC>

80. IMPLEMENTATION OF THE GUAM-CNMI VISA WAIVER PROGRAM

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


PL 110-229, sec 702


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 100.4; 8 CFR 212.1; 8 CFR 233.5; 8 CFR 235.5; 19 CFR 4.7b; 19 CFR 
122.49a


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 4, 2008, PL 110-229.


Abstract:


This rule amends Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations to 
implement section 702 of the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008 
(CNRA). This law extends the immigration laws of the United States to 
the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) and provides 
for a joint visa waiver program for travel to Guam and the CNMI. This 
rule implements section 702 of the CNRA by amending the regulations to 
replace the current Guam Visa Waiver Program with a new Guam-CNMI Visa 
Waiver Program. The amended regulations set forth the requirements for 
nonimmigrant visitors who seek admission for business or pleasure and 
solely for entry into and stay on Guam or the CNMI without a visa. This 
rule also establishes six ports of entry in the CNMI for purposes of 
administering and enforcing the Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver Program.


Statement of Need:


Currently, aliens who are citizens of eligible countries may apply for 
admission to Guam at a Guam port of entry as nonimmigrant visitors for 
a period of fifteen (15) days or less, for business or pleasure, 
without first obtaining a nonimmigrant visa, provided that they are 
otherwise eligible for admission. Section 702(b) of the Consolidated 
Natural Resources Act of 2008 (CNRA), supersedes the Guam visa waiver 
program by providing for a visa waiver program for Guam and the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver 
Program). Section 702(b) requires DHS to promulgate regulations within 
180 days of enactment of the CNRA to allow nonimmigrant visitors from 
eligible countries to apply for admission into Guam and the CNMI, for 
business or pleasure, without a visa, for a period of authorized stay 
of no longer than forty-five (45) days.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Guam-CNMI Visa Waiver Program is based on congressional authority 
provided under 702(b) of the Consolidated Natural Resources Act of 2008 
(CNRA).


Alternatives:


None


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The most significant change for admission to the CNMI as a result of 
the rule will be for visitors from those countries who are not included 
in either the existing U.S. Visa Waiver Program or the Guam-CNMI Visa 
Waiver Program established by the rule. These visitors must apply for 
U.S. visas, which require in-person interviews at U.S. embassies or 
consulates and higher fees than the CNMI currently assesses for its 
visitor

[[Page 79561]]

entry permits. CBP anticipates that the annual cost to the CNMI will be 
$6 million. These are losses associated with the reduced visits from 
foreign travelers who may no longer visit the CNMI upon implementation 
of this rule.


The anticipated benefits of the rule are enhanced security that will 
result from the federalization of the immigration functions in the 
CNMI.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              01/16/09                     74 FR 2824
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   01/16/09
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          03/17/09
Technical Amendment; 
    Change of 
    Implementation Date         05/28/09                    74 FR 25387
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Agency Contact:
Cheryl C. Peters
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
1300 Pennsylvania Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20229
Phone: 202 344-1707
Email: cheryl.c.peters@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1651-AA81
RIN: 1651-AA77
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--Transportation Security Administration (TSA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

81. LARGE AIRCRAFT SECURITY PROGRAM, OTHER AIRCRAFT OPERATOR SECURITY 
PROGRAM, AND AIRPORT OPERATOR SECURITY PROGRAM

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


6 USC 469; 18 USC 842; 18 USC 845; 46 USC 70102 to 70106; 46 USC 70117; 
49 USC 114; 49 USC114(f)(3); 49 USC 5103; 49 USC 5103a; 49 USC 40113; 
49 USC 44901 to 44907; 49 USC 44913 to 44914; 49 USC 44916 to 44918; 49 
USC 44932; 49 USC 44935 to 44936; 49 USC 44942; 49 USC 46105


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 1515; 49 CFR 1520; 49 CFR 1522; 49 CFR 1540; 49 CFR 1542; 49 CFR 
1544; 49 CFR 1550


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


On October 30, 2008, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) 
issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), proposing to amend 
current aviation transportation security regulations to enhance the 
security of general aviation by expanding the scope of current 
requirements, and by adding new requirements for certain large aircraft 
operators and airports serving those aircraft. TSA also proposed that 
all aircraft operations, including corporate and private charter 
operations, with aircraft having a maximum certificated takeoff weight 
(MTOW) above 12,500 pounds (``large aircraft'') be required to adopt a 
large aircraft security program. TSA also proposed to require certain 
airports that serve large aircraft to adopt security programs. TSA is 
preparing a supplemental NPRM (SNPRM), which will include a comment 
period for public comments.


After considering comments received on the NPRM and meeting with 
stakeholders, TSA decided to revise the original proposal to tailor 
security requirements to the general aviation industry. TSA is 
considering alternatives to the following proposed provisions in the 
SNPRM: (1) The type of aircraft subject to TSA regulation; (2) 
compliance oversight; (3) watch list matching of passengers; (4) 
prohibited items; (5) scope of the background check requirements and 
the procedures used to implement the requirement; and (6) other issues. 
Additionally, in the SNPRM, TSA plans to propose security measures for 
foreign aircraft operators. U.S. and foreign operators would implement 
commensurate measures under the proposed rule.


Statement of Need:


This rule would enhance current security measures and might apply 
security measures currently in place for operators of certain types of 
aircraft to operators of other aircraft, including general aviation 
operators. While the focus of TSA's existing aviation security programs 
has been on air carriers and commercial operators, TSA is aware that 
general aviation aircraft of sufficient size and weight may inflict 
significant damage and loss of lives if they are hijacked and used as 
missiles. TSA has current regulations that apply to large aircraft 
operated by air carriers and commercial operators, including the 
twelve-five program, the partial program, and the private charter 
program. However, the current regulations in 49 CFR part 1544 do not 
cover all general aviation operations, such as those operated by 
corporations and individuals, and such operations do not have the 
features that are necessary to enhance security. Therefore, TSA is 
preparing a SNPRM which proposes to establish new security measures for 
operators, including general aviation operators, that are not covered 
under TSA's current regulations.


Summary of Legal Basis:


49 U.S.C. 114, 40113, 44903.


Alternatives:


DHS considered continuing to use voluntary guidance to secure general 
aviation, but determined that to ensure that each aircraft operator 
maintains an appropriate level of security, these security measures 
would need to be mandatory requirements.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


This proposed rule would yield benefits in the areas of security and 
quality governance. The rule would enhance security by expanding the 
mandatory use of security measures to certain operators of large 
aircraft that are not currently required to have a security plan. These 
measures would deter malicious individuals from perpetrating acts that 
might compromise transportation or national security by using large 
aircraft for these purposes.


As stated above, TSA is revising this proposed rule and preparing a 
SNPRM. Aircraft operators, passengers, and TSA would incur costs to 
comply with the requirements of the proposed rule. TSA is currently 
evaluating the costs of the revised rule which will be published in the 
SNPRM.

[[Page 79562]]

Risks:


This rulemaking addresses the national security risk of general 
aviation aircraft being used as a weapon or as a means to transport 
persons or weapons that could pose a threat to the United States.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            10/30/08                    73 FR 64790
NPRM Comment Period End         12/29/08
Notice--NPRM Comment 
    Period Extended             11/25/08                    73 FR 71590
NPRM Extended Comment 
    Period End                  02/27/09
Notice--Public Meetings; 
    Requests for Comments       12/28/08                    73 FR 77045
Supplemental NPRM               06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Local


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


Additional Information:


Public Meetings held on: Jan. 6, 2009, at White Plains, NY; Jan. 8, 
2009, at Atlanta, GA; Jan 16, 2009, at Chicago, IL; Jan. 23, 2009, at 
Burbank, CA; and Jan. 28, 2009, at Houston, TX.


Additional Comment Sessions held in Arlington, VA, on April 16, 2009, 
May 6, 2009, and June 15, 2009.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Erik Jensen
Assistant General Manager, General Aviation Security
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-132S
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-2154
Fax: 571 227-1923
Email: erik.jensen@dhs.gov

Holly Merwin
Economist, Regulatory Development and Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-343N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-4656
Fax: 571 227-1362
Email: holly.merwin@dhs.gov

Mai Dinh
Assistant Chief Counsel, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-309N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-2725
Fax: 571 227-1378
Email: mai.dinh@dhs.gov

Kiersten Ols
Attorney, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-316N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-2403
Fax: 571 227-1378
Email: kiersten.ols@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1652-AA03, Related to 1652-AA04
RIN: 1652-AA53
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--TSA

<###DOC>

82. PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AND PASSENGER RAILROADS--SECURITY TRAINING OF 
EMPLOYEES

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


49 USC 114; PL 110-53, secs 1408 and 1517


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, November 1, 2007, Interim Rule for public 
transportation agencies is due 90 days after date of enactment.


Final, Statutory, February 3, 2008, Rule for railroads is due 6 months 
after date of enactment.


Final, Statutory, August 3, 2008, Rule for public transportation 
agencies is due 1 year after date of enactment.


According to section 1408 of Public Law 110-53, Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007; 121 
Stat. 266), interim final regulations for public transportation 
agencies are due 90 days after the date of enactment (Nov. 1, 2007), 
and final regulations are due 1 year after the date of enactment of 
this Act.According to section 1517 of the same Act, final regulations 
for railroads are due no later than 6 months after the date of 
enactment of this Act.


Abstract:


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will propose a new 
regulation to improve the security of public transportation and 
passenger railroads in accordance with the Implementing Recommendations 
of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007. This rulemaking will propose 
general requirements for a public transportation security training 
program and a passenger railroad training program to prepare public 
transportation and passenger railroad employees, including frontline 
employees, for potential security threats and conditions.


Statement of Need:


A security training program for public transportation agencies and for 
passenger railroads is proposed to prepare public transportation and 
passenger railroad employees, including frontline employees, for 
potential security threats and conditions.


Summary of Legal Basis:


49 U.S.C. 114; sections 1408 and 1517 of Public Law 110-53, 
Implementing

[[Page 79563]]

Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007; 121 
Stat. 266).


Alternatives:


TSA is required by statute to publish regulations requiring security 
programs for these operators. As part of its notice of proposed 
rulemaking, TSA will seek public comment on the numerous ways in which 
the final rule could carry out the requirements of the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


TSA will estimate the costs that the public transportation agencies and 
passenger railroads covered by this proposed rule would incur following 
its implementation. These costs will include estimates for the 
following elements: 1) creating or modifying a security training 
program and submitting it to TSA; 2) training (initial and recurrent) 
all security-sensitive employees; 3) maintaining records of employee 
training; 4) being available for inspections; 5) providing information 
on security coordinators and alternates; and 6) reporting security 
concerns. TSA will also estimate the costs TSA itself would expect to 
incur with the implementation of this rule.


The primary benefit of the Security Training NPRM will be to enhance 
United States surface transportation security by reducing the 
vulnerability of public transportation agencies and passenger railroads 
to terrorist activity through the training of security-sensitive 
employees. TSA uses a break-even analysis to assess the trade-off 
between the beneficial effects of the Security Training NPRM and the 
costs of implementing the rulemaking. This break-even analysis uses 
scenarios extracted from the TSA Transportation Sector Security Risk 
Assessment (TSSRA) to determine the degree to which the Security 
Training NPRM must reduce the overall risk of a terrorist attack in 
order for the expected benefits of the NPRM to justify the estimated 
costs. For its analyses, TSA uses scenarios with varying levels of 
risk, but only details the consequence estimates. To maintain 
consistency, TSA developed the analyses with a method similar to that 
used for the break-even analyses conducted in earlier DHS rules.


After estimating the total consequence of each scenario by monetizing 
lives lost, injuries incurred, capital replacement and clean-up, and 
lost revenue, TSA will use this figure and the annualized cost of the 
NPRM for public transportation and passenger rail to calculate a 
breakeven annual likelihood of attack.


Risks:


The Department of Homeland Security aims to prevent terrorist attacks 
within the United States and to reduce the vulnerability of the United 
States to terrorism. By providing for security training for personnel, 
TSA intends in this rulemaking to reduce the risk of a terrorist attack 
on this transportation sector.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Morvarid Zolghadr
Branch Chief, Policy and Plans, Mass Transit and Passenger Rail 
Security
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, E10-113S
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-2957
Fax: 571 227-0729
Email: morvarid.zolghadr@dhs.gov

Nicholas (Nick) Acheson
Sr. Economist, Regulatory Development and Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-341N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-5474
Fax: 703 603-0302
Email: nicholas.acheson@dhs.gov

David Kasminoff
Sr. Counsel, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-310N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-3583
Fax: 571 227-1378
Email: david.kasminoff@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1652-AA57, Related to 1652-AA59
RIN: 1652-AA55
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--TSA

<###DOC>

83. FREIGHT RAILROADS--SECURITY TRAINING OF EMPLOYEES

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


49 USC 114; PL 110-53, sec 1517


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, February 3, 2008, Rule is due 6 months after date of 
enactment.

[[Page 79564]]

According to section 1517 of Public Law 110-53, Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007; 121 
Stat. 266), TSA must issue a regulation no later than 6 months after 
the date of enactment of this Act.


Abstract:


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will propose new 
regulations to improve the security of freight railroads in accordance 
with the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 
2007. The rulemaking will propose general requirements for a security 
training program to prepare freight railroad employees, including 
frontline employees, for potential security threats and conditions. The 
regulations will take into consideration any current security training 
requirements or best practices.


Statement of Need:


The rulemaking will propose general requirements for a security 
training program to prepare freight railroad employees, including 
frontline employees, for potential security threats and conditions.


Summary of Legal Basis:


49 U.S.C. 114; section 1517 of Public Law 110-53, Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007; 121 
Stat. 266).


Alternatives:


TSA is required by statute to publish regulations requiring security 
programs for these operators. As part of its notice of proposed 
rulemaking, TSA will seek public comment on the numerous ways in which 
the final rule could carry out the requirements of the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


TSA will estimate the costs that the freight rail systems covered by 
this proposed rule would incur following its implementation. These 
costs will include estimates for the following elements: 1) Creating or 
modifying a security training program and submitting it to TSA; 2) 
training (initial and recurrent) all security-sensitive employees; 3) 
maintaining records of employee training; 4) being available for 
inspections; 5) providing information on security coordinators and 
alternates; and 6) reporting security concerns. TSA will also estimate 
the costs TSA itself would expect to incur with the implementation of 
this rule.


The primary benefit of the Security Training NPRM will be to enhance 
United States surface transportation security by reducing the 
vulnerability of freight railroad systems to terrorist activity through 
the training of security-sensitive employees. TSA uses a break-even 
analysis to assess the trade-off between the beneficial effects of the 
Security Training NPRM and the costs of implementing the rulemaking. 
This break-even analysis uses scenarios extracted from the TSA 
Transportation Sector Security Risk Assessment (TSSRA) to determine the 
degree to which the Security Training NPRM must reduce the overall risk 
of a terrorist attack in order for the expected benefits of the NPRM to 
justify the estimated costs. For its analyses, TSA uses scenarios with 
varying levels of risk, but only details the consequence estimates. To 
maintain consistency, TSA developed the analyses with a method similar 
to that used for the break-even analyses conducted in earlier DHS 
rules.


After estimating the consequence of each scenario by monetizing lives 
lost, injuries incurred, capital replacement and clean-up, and lost 
revenue, TSA will use this figure and the annualized cost of the NPRM 
for freight rail to calculate a breakeven annual likelihood of attack.


Risks:


The Department of Homeland Security aims to prevent terrorist attacks 
within the United States and to reduce the vulnerability of the United 
States to terrorism. By providing for security training for personnel, 
TSA intends in this rulemaking to reduce the risk of a terrorist attack 
on this transportation sector.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Scott Gorton
Policy and Plans Branch Chief for Freight Rail
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-423N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-1251
Fax: 571 227-2930
Email: scott.gorton@dhs.gov

Nicholas (Nick) Acheson
Sr. Economist, Regulatory Development and Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-341N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-5474
Fax: 703 603-0302
Email: nicholas.acheson@dhs.gov

David Kasminoff
Sr. Counsel, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-310N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-3583
Fax: 571 227-1378
Email: david.kasminoff@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1652-AA55, Related to 1652-AA59
RIN: 1652-AA57
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--TSA

<###DOC>

84. OVER-THE-ROAD BUSES--SECURITY TRAINING OF EMPLOYEES

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


49 USC 114; PL 110-53, sec 1534


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, February 3, 2008, Rule due 6 months after date of 
enactment.


According to section 1534 of Public Law 110-53, Implementing

[[Page 79565]]

Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007); 121 
Stat. 266), TSA must issue a regulation no later than 6 months after 
date of enactment of this Act.


Abstract:


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) will propose new 
regulations to improve the security of over-the-road buses in 
accordance with the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission 
Act of 2007. The rulemaking will propose an over-the-road bus security 
training program to prepare over-the-road bus frontline employees for 
potential security threats and conditions. The regulations will take 
into consideration any current security training requirements or best 
practices.


Statement of Need:


The rulemaking will propose an over-the-road bus security training 
program to prepare over-the-road bus frontline employees for potential 
security threats and conditions.


Summary of Legal Basis:


49 U.S.C. 114; section 1534 of Public Law 110-53, Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Aug. 3, 2007; 121 
Stat. 266).


Alternatives:


TSA is required by statute to publish regulations requiring security 
programs for these operators. As part of its notice of proposed 
rulemaking, TSA will seek public comment on the numerous ways in which 
the final rule could carry out the requirements of the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


TSA will estimate the costs that the commercial over-the-road bus 
(OTRB) entities covered by this proposed rule would incur following its 
implementation. These costs will include estimates for the following 
elements: 1) Creating or modifying a security training program and 
submitting it to TSA; 2) training (initial and recurrent) all security-
sensitive employees; 3) maintaining records of employee training; 4) 
being available for inspections; 5) providing information on security 
coordinators and alternates; and 6) reporting security concerns. TSA 
will also estimate the costs TSA itself would expect to incur with the 
implementation of this rule.


The primary benefit of the Security Training NPRM will be to enhance 
United States surface transportation security by reducing the 
vulnerability of commercial OTRB operators to terrorist activity 
through the training of security-sensitive employees. TSA uses a break-
even analysis to assess the trade-off between the beneficial effects of 
the Security Training NPRM and the costs of implementing the 
rulemaking. This break-even analysis uses scenarios extracted from the 
TSA Transportation Sector Security Risk Assessment (TSSRA) to determine 
the degree to which the Security Training NPRM must reduce the overall 
risk of a terrorist attack in order for the expected benefits of the 
NPRM to justify the estimated costs. For its analyses, TSA uses 
scenarios with varying levels of risk, but only details the consequence 
estimates. To maintain consistency, TSA developed the analyses with a 
method similar to that used for the break-even analyses conducted in 
earlier DHS rules.


After estimating the consequence of each scenario by monetizing lives 
lost, injuries incurred, capital replacement and clean-up, and lost 
revenue, TSA will use this figure and the annualized cost of the NPRM 
for OTRB operators to calculate a breakeven annual likelihood of 
attack.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Steve Sprague
Highway Passenger, Infrastructure and Licensing Branch Chief; Highway 
and Motor Carrier Programs
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-1468
Email: steve.sprague@dhs.gov

Shaina Pereira
Economist, Regulatory Development and Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-339N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-5138
Fax: 571 227-1362
Email: shaina.pereira@dhs.gov

Traci Klemm
Attorney, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, E12-335N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-3596
Email: traci.klemm@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1652-AA55, Related to 1652-AA57
RIN: 1652-AA59
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--TSA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

85. AIRCRAFT REPAIR STATION SECURITY

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 114; 49 USC 44924


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 1554


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, August 8, 2004, Rule within 240 days of the date of 
enactment of Vision 100.

[[Page 79566]]

Final, Statutory, August 3, 2008, Rule within 1 year after the date of 
enactment of 9/11 Commission Act.


Section 611(b)(1) of Vision 100--Century of Aviation Reauthorization 
Act (Pub. L. 108-176; Dec. 12, 2003; 117 Stat. 2490), codified at 49 
U.S.C. 44924, requires TSA issue ``final regulations to ensure the 
security of foreign and domestic aircraft repair stations.'' Section 
1616 of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 
2007 (Pub. L. 110--531; Aug. 3, 2007; 21 Stat. 266) requires TSA issue 
a final rule on foreign repair station security.


Abstract:


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) proposed to add a new 
regulation to improve the security of domestic and foreign aircraft 
repair stations, as required by the section 611 of Vision 100--Century 
of Aviation Reauthorization Act and section 1616 of the 9/11 Commission 
Act of 2007. The regulation proposed general requirements for security 
programs to be adopted and implemented by repair stations certificated 
by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). A notice of proposed 
rulemaking (NPRM) was published in the Federal Register on November 18, 
2009, requesting public comments to be submitted by January 19, 2010. 
The comment period was extended to February 19, 2010, on request of the 
stakeholders to allow the aviation industry and other interested 
entities and individuals additional time to complete their comments.


Statement of Need:


The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is proposing 
regulations to improve the security of domestic and foreign aircraft 
repair stations. The NPRM proposed to require repair stations that are 
certificated by the Federal Aviation Administration to adopt and carry 
out a security program. The proposal will codify the scope of TSA's 
existing inspection program. The proposal also provides procedures for 
repair stations to seek review of any TSA determination that security 
measures are deficient.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 611(b)(1) of Vision 100--Century of Aviation Reauthorization 
Act (Pub. L. 108-176; Dec. 12, 2003; 117 Stat. 2490), codified at 49 
U.S.C. 44924, requires TSA to issue ``final regulations to ensure the 
security of foreign and domestic aircraft repair stations'' within 240 
days from date of enactment of Vision 100. Section 1616 of Public Law 
110-53, Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 
(Aug. 3, 2007; 121 Stat. 266) requires that the FAA may not certify any 
foreign repair stations if the regulations are not


issued within 1 year after the date of enactment of the 9/11 Commission 
Act unless the repair station was previously certificated or is in the 
process of certification.


Alternatives:


TSA is required by statute to publish regulations requiring security 
programs for aircraft repair stations. As part of its notice of 
proposed rulemaking, TSA sought public comment on the numerous 
alternative ways in which the final rule could carry out the 
requirements of the statute.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


TSA anticipates costs to aircraft repair stations mainly related to the 
establishment of security programs, which may include adding such 
measures as access controls, a personnel identification system, 
security awareness training, the designation of a security coordinator, 
employee background verification, and contingency plan. The total 10-
year undiscounted cost of the program is $344 million. The discounted 
at 7 percent, 10-year cost of the program is $241 million. Security 
coordinator costs of $132 million and training costs of $132 million 
represent the largest portions of the program.


A major line of defense against an aviation-related terrorist act is 
the prevention of explosives, weapons, and/or incendiary devices from 
getting on board a plane. To date, efforts have been primarily related 
to inspection of baggage, passengers, and cargo, and security measures 
at airports that serve air carriers. With this rule, attention is given 
to aircraft that are located at repair stations, and to aircraft parts 
that are at repair stations, themselves to reduce the likelihood of an 
attack against aviation and the country. Since repair station personnel 
have direct access to all parts of an aircraft, the potential exists 
for a terrorist to seek to commandeer or compromise an aircraft when 
the aircraft is at one of these facilities. Moreover, as TSA tightens 
security in other areas of aviation, repair stations increasingly may 
become attractive targets for terrorist organizations attempting to 
evade aviation security protections currently in place.


Risks:


The Department of Homeland Security aims to prevent terrorist attacks 
within the United States and to reduce the vulnerability of the United 
States to terrorism. By requiring security programs for aircraft repair 
stations, TSA will focus on preventing unauthorized access to repair 
work and to aircraft to prevent sabotage or hijacking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice--Public Meeting; 
    Request for Comments        02/24/04                     69 FR 8357
Report to Congress              08/24/04
NPRM                            11/18/09                    74 FR 59873
NPRM Comment Period End         01/19/10
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    12/29/09                    74 FR 68774
NPRM Extended Comment 
    Period End                  02/19/10
Final Rule                      05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

[[Page 79567]]

Agency Contact:
Celio Young
Program Manager, Repair Stations
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management, General Aviation 
Division
TSA-28, HQ, E5
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-3580
Fax: 571 227-1362
Email: celio.young@dhs.gov

Thomas (Tom) Philson
Manager, Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-411N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-3236
Fax: 571 227-1362
Email: thomas.philson@dhs.gov

Linda L. Kent
Assistant Chief Counsel, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-126S
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-2675
Fax: 571 227-1381
Email: linda.kent@dhs.gov
RIN: 1652-AA38
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--TSA

<###DOC>

86. AIR CARGO SCREENING

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


PL 110-53, sec 1602; 49 USC 114; 49 USC 40113; 49 USC 44901 to 44905; 
49 USC 44913 to 44914; 49 USC 44916; 49 USC 44935 to 44936; 49 USC 
46105


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 1520; 49 CFR 1522; 49 CFR 1540; 49 CFR 1544; 49 CFR 1548; 49 CFR 
1549


Legal Deadline:


Other, Statutory, February 3, 2009, Screen 50 percent of cargo on 
passenger aircraft.


Other, Statutory, August 3, 2010, Screen 100 percent of cargo on 
passenger aircraft.


Final, Statutory, November 3, 2010, 1 year after effective date of the 
interim final rule.


Section 1602 of the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission 
Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-53, 121 Stat. 266, 478, Aug. 3, 2007) requires 
that the Secretary of Homeland Security establish a system to screen 50 
percent of cargo on passenger aircraft NLT 18 months after the date of 
enactment and 100 percent of such cargo NLT 3 years after the date of 
enactment. The 9/11 Act also requires that TSA issue a final rule NLT 1 
year after the effective date of the interim final rule (Nov. 2010).


Abstract:


On September 16, 2009, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) 
issued an Interim Final Rule (IFR) that established the Certified Cargo 
Screening Program (CCSP) that certifies shippers, manufacturers, and 
other entities to screen air cargo intended for transport on a 
passenger aircraft. This is the primary means through which TSA will 
meet the requirements of section 1602 of the Implementing 
Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 that mandates that 
100 percent of air cargo transported on passenger aircraft, operated by 
an air carrier or foreign air carrier in air transportation or 
intrastate air transportation, be screened by August 2010, to ensure 
the security of all such passenger aircraft carrying cargo.


Under this rulemaking, each certified cargo screening facility (CCSF) 
and its employees and authorized representatives that will be screening 
cargo must successfully complete a security threat assessment. The CCSF 
must also submit to an assessment of their security measures by TSA-
approved validators, screen cargo using TSA-approved methods, and 
initiate strict chain of custody measures to ensure the security of the 
cargo throughout the supply chain prior to tendering it for transport 
on passenger aircraft.


TSA will issue a final rule responding to public comments from the IFR.


Statement of Need:


TSA is establishing a system to screen 100 percent of cargo transported 
on passenger aircraft operated by an air carrier or foreign air carrier 
in air transportation or intrastate air transportation to ensure the 
security of all such passenger aircraft carrying cargo.


The system shall require, at a minimum, that equipment, technology, 
procedures, personnel, or other methods approved by the Administrator 
of TSA, used to screen cargo carried on passenger aircraft, provide a 
level of security commensurate with the level of security for the 
screening of passenger checked baggage.


Summary of Legal Basis:


49 U.S.C. 114; section 1602 of the Implementing Recommendations of the 
9/11 Commission Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-53, 121 Stat. 266, 478, 10/3/
2007), codified at 49 U.S.C. 44901(g).


Alternatives:


The Interim Final Rule (IFR) states that as an alternative to 
establishing the CCSP, TSA considered meeting the statutory 
requirements by having aircraft operators screen cargo intended for 
transportation on passenger aircraft--that is, continuing the current 
cargo screening program but expanding it to 85 percent of air cargo on 
passenger aircraft, with the remaining 15 percent assumed to be shipped 
via other modes. Under this alternative, the cost drivers are screening 
equipment, personnel for screening, training of personnel, and delays. 
Delays are the largest cost component, totaling $7.0 billion over 10 
years, undiscounted. In summary,


the undiscounted 10 year cost of the alternative is $11.1 billion, and 
discounted at 7 percent, the cost is $7.7 billion.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


TSA estimates the cost of the rule will be $1.9 billion (discounted at 
7 percent) over 10 years. TSA analyzed the alternative of not 
establishing the Certified Cargo Screening Program (CCSP) and, instead, 
having aircraft operators and air carriers perform screening of all 
cargo transported on passenger aircraft. Absent the CCSP, the estimated 
cost to aircraft operators and air carriers is $7.7 billion (discounted 
at 7 percent) over 10 years.


The bulk of the costs for both the CCSP and the alternative are 
attributed to personnel and the impact of cargo delays resulting from 
the addition of a new operational process.


The benefits of the FR are five-fold. First, passenger air carriers 
will be more firmly protected against an act of terrorism or other 
malicious behaviors by the screening of 100 percent of cargo

[[Page 79568]]

shipped on passenger aircraft. Second, allowing the screening process 
to occur throughout the supply chain via the Certified Cargo Screening


Program will reduce potential bottlenecks and delays at the airports. 
Third, the FR will allow market forces to identify the most efficient 
venue for screening along the supply chain, as entities upstream from 
the aircraft operator may apply to become CCSFs and screen cargo. 
Fourth, the CCSP enables members to screen


valuable cargo earlier in the supply chain and avoid any potentially 
invasive screening that may occur at the aircraft operator level. 
Finally, validation firms will perform assessments of the entities that 
become CCSFs, allowing TSA to set priorities for compliance 
inspections.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              09/16/09                    74 FR 47672
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          11/16/09
Interim Final Rule 
    Effective                   11/16/09
Final Rule                      03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal


Agency Contact:
Victor Parker
Branch Chief, Air Cargo Policy & Plans
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-3664
Email: victor.parker@dhs.gov

Adam Sicking
Economist, Regulatory Development and Economic Analysis
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of Transportation Sector Network Management
TSA-28, HQ, E10-345N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6028
Phone: 571 227-2304
Fax: 571 227-1362
Email: adam.sicking@dhs.gov

Alice Crowe
Sr. Attorney, Regulations and Security Standards Division
Department of Homeland Security
Transportation Security Administration
Office of the Chief Counsel
TSA-2, HQ, E12-320N
601 South 12th Street
Arlington, VA 20598-6002
Phone: 571 227-2652
Fax: 571 227-1379
Email: alice.crowe@dhs.gov
RIN: 1652-AA64
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (USICE)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

87. CONTINUED DETENTION OF ALIENS SUBJECT TO FINAL ORDERS OF REMOVAL

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1103; 8 USC 1223; 8 USC 1227; 8 USC 1231; 8 USC 1253


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 241


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) is proposing to amend the 
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulatory provisions for custody 
determinations for aliens in immigration detention who are subject to 
an administratively final order of removal. The proposed amendment 
would add a paragraph to 8 CFR 241.4(g) providing that U.S. Immigration 
and Customs Enforcement (ICE) shall have a reasonable period of time to 
effectuate an alien's removal where the alien is not in immigration 
custody when the order of removal becomes administratively final. The 
proposed rule would also clarify the removal period time frame afforded 
to the agency following an alien's compliance with his or her 
obligations regarding removal subsequent to a period of obstruction or 
failure to cooperate. The rule proposes to make conforming changes to 
241.13(b)(2). Lastly, the rule proposes to add a paragraph to 8 CFR 
241.13(b)(3) to make clear that aliens certified by the Secretary under 
section 236A of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. 1226a, 
are not subject to the provisions of 8 CFR 241.13, in accordance with 
the separate detention standard provided under the Act.


Statement of Need:


The companion final rule will improve the post order custody review 
process in the final rule related to the Detention of Aliens Subject to 
Final Orders of Removal in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions 
in Zadvydas v. Davis, 533 U.S. 678 (2001), Clark v. Martinez, 543 U.S. 
371 (2005) and conforming changes as required by the enactment of the 
Homeland Security Act of 2002 (HSA). This notice of proposed rulemaking 
(NPRM) will propose to amend 8 CFR 241.1(g) to provide for a new 90-day 
removal period once an alien comes into compliance with his or her 
obligation to make timely application in good faith for travel or other 
documents and not conspire or act to prevent removal.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


This proposed rule will clarify the regulatory provisions concerning 
the removal of aliens that are subject to an administratively final 
order of removal. DHS does not anticipate there will be cost impacts to 
the public as a result of the rule.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

[[Page 79569]]

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Jason Johnsen
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
500 12th Street SW.
Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202 732-4245
Email: jason.johnsen@dhs.gov
Related RIN: Related to 1653-AA13
RIN: 1653-AA60
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USICE

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

88. CONTINUED DETENTION OF ALIENS SUBJECT TO FINAL ORDERS OF REMOVAL

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1103; 8 USC 1223; 8 USC 1227; 8 USC 1231; 8 USC 1253; . . .


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 241


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is finalizing, with 
amendments, the interim rule that was published on November 14, 2001, 
by the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (Service). The 
interim rule included procedures for conducting custody determinations 
in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Zadvydas v. Davis, 533 
U.S. 678 (2001), which held that the detention period of certain aliens 
who are subject to a final administrative order of removal is limited 
under section 241(a)(6) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (Act) to 
the period reasonably necessary to effect their removal. The interim 
rule amended section 241.4 of title 8, Code of Federal Regulations 
(CFR), in addition to creating two new sections: 8 CFR 241.13 
(establishing custody review procedures based on the significant 
likelihood of the alien's removal in the reasonably foreseeable future) 
and 241.14 (establishing custody review procedures for special 
circumstances cases). Subsequently, in the case of Clark v. Martinez, 
543 U.S. 371 (2005), the Supreme Court clarified a question left open 
in Zadvydas, and held that section 241(a)(6) of the Act applies equally 
to all aliens described in that section. This rule amends the interim 
rule to conform to the requirements of Martinez. Further, the 
procedures for custody determinations for post-removal period aliens 
who are subject to an administratively final order of removal, and who 
have not been released from detention or repatriated, have been revised 
in response to comments received and experience gained from 
administration of the interim rule published in 2001. This final rule 
also makes conforming changes as required by the enactment of the 
Homeland Security Act of 2002 (HSA). Additionally, certain portions of 
the final rule were determined to require public comment and, for this 
reason, have been developed into a separate/companion notice of 
proposed rulemaking; RIN 1653-AA60.


Statement of Need:


This rule will improve the post order custody review process in the 
final rule related to the Detention of Aliens Subject to Final Orders 
of Removal in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decisions in Zadvydas 
v. Davis, 533 U.S. 678 (2001), Clark v. Martinez, 543 U.S. 371 (2005) 
and conforming changes as required by the enactment of the Homeland 
Security Act of 2002 (HSA). A companion notice of proposed rulemaking 
(NPRM) will propose to amend 8 CFR 241.1(g) to provide for a new 90-day 
removal period once an alien comes into compliance with his or her 
obligation to make timely application in good faith for travel or other 
documents and not conspire or act to prevent removal.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The changes are administrative and procedural in nature, and will not 
result in cost impacts to the public. The benefits of making these 
changes to the regulations will allow for expedited review of the post-
order custody review process.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              11/14/01                    66 FR 56967
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          01/14/02
Final Action                    03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


INS No. 2156-01


Transferred from RIN 1115-AG29


Agency Contact:
Jason Johnsen
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
500 12th Street SW.
Washington, DC 20024
Phone: 202 732-4245
Email: jason.johnsen@dhs.gov
RIN: 1653-AA13
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--USICE

<###DOC>

89. EXTENDING PERIOD FOR OPTIONAL PRACTICAL TRAINING BY 17 MONTHS FOR 
F-1 NONIMMIGRANT STUDENTS WITH STEM DEGREES AND EXPANDING THE CAP-GAP 
RELIEF FOR ALL F-1 STUDENTS WITH PENDING H-1B PETITIONS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1101 to 1103; 8 USC 1182; 8 USC 1184 to 1187; 8 USC 1221; 8 USC 
1281 and 1282; 8 USC 1301 to 1305


CFR Citation:


8 CFR 214


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


Currently, foreign students in F-1 nonimmigrant status who have been 
enrolled on a full-time basis for at least one full academic year in a 
college, university, conservatory, or seminary certified by U.S. 
Immigration and Custom Enforcement's (ICE) Student and Exchange Visitor 
Program (SEVP) are eligible for 12 months of optional practical 
training (OPT) to work for a

[[Page 79570]]

U.S. employer in a job directly related to the student's major area of 
study. The maximum period of OPT is 29 months for F-1 students who have 
completed a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) 
degree and accept employment with employers enrolled in U.S. 
Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS') E-Verify employment 
verification program. Employers of F-1 students with an extension of 
post-completion OPT authorization must report to the student's 
designated school official (DSO) within 48 hours after the OPT student 
has been terminated from, or otherwise leaves, his or her employment 
with that employer prior to end of the authorized period of OPT.


The final rule will respond to public comments and may make adjustments 
to the regulations.


Statement of Need:


ICE will improve SEVP processes by publishing the Final Optional 
Practical Training (OPT) rule, which will respond to comments on the 
OPT interim final rule (IFR). The IFR increased the maximum period of 
OPT from 12 months to 29 months for nonimmigrant students who have 
completed a science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM) 
degree and who accept employment with employers who participate in the 
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services' (USCIS') E-Verify employment 
verification program.


Alternatives:


DHS is considering several alternatives to the 17-month extension of 
OPT and cap-gap extension, ranging from taking no action to further 
extension for a larger populace. The interim final rule addressed an 
immediate competitive disadvantage faced by U.S. industries and 
ameliorated some of the adverse impacts on the U.S. economy. DHS 
continues to evaluate both quantitative and qualitative alternatives.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Based on an estimated 12,000 students per year that will receive an OPT 
extension and an estimated 5,300 employers that will need to enroll in 
E-verify, DHS projects that this rule will cost students approximately 
$1.49 million per year in additional information collection burdens, 
$4,080,000 in fees, and cost employers $1,240,000 to enroll in E-Verify 
and $168,540 per year thereafter to verify the status of new hires. 
However, this rule will increase the availability of qualified workers 
in science, technology, engineering, and mathematical fields; reduce 
delays that place U.S. employers at a disadvantage when recruiting 
foreign job candidates, thereby improving strategic and resource 
planning capabilities; increase the quality of life for participating 
students, and increase the integrity of the student visa program.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Interim Final Rule              04/08/08                    73 FR 18944
Interim Final Rule 
    Comment Period End          06/09/08
Final Rule                      03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.dhs.gov/sevis/

Agency Contact:
Sharon Snyder
Acting Branch Chief, SEVP Policy, Student and Exchange Visitor Program
Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Potomac Center North
500 12th Street SW.
Washington, DC 20024-6121
Phone: 703 603-3415
RIN: 1653-AA56
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DHS--Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

90. UPDATE OF FEMA'S PUBLIC ASSISTANCE REGULATIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


42 USC 5121 to 5207


CFR Citation:


44 CFR 206


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule would revise the Federal Emergency Management 
Agency's Public Assistance program regulations. Many of these changes 
reflect amendments made to the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and 
Emergency Assistance Act by the Post-Katrina Emergency Management 
Reform Act of 2006 and the Security and Accountability For Every Port 
Act of 2006. The proposed rule also proposes to reflect lessons learned 
from recent events, and propose further substantive and non-substantive 
clarifications and corrections to improve upon the Public Assistance 
regulations. This proposed rule is intended to improve the efficiency 
and consistency of the Public Assistance program, as well as implement 
new statutory authority by expanding Federal assistance, improving the 
Project Worksheet process, empowering grantees, and improving State 
Administrative Plans.


Statement of Need:


The proposed changes implement new statutory authorities and 
incorporate necessary clarifications and corrections to streamline and 
improve the Public Assistance program. Portions of FEMA's Public 
Assistance regulations have become out of date and do not implement all 
of FEMA's available statutory authorities. The current regulations 
inhibit FEMA's ability to clearly articulate its regulatory 
requirements, and the Public Assistance applicants' understanding of 
the program. The proposed changes are intended to improve the 
efficiency and consistency of the Public Assistance program.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The legal authority for the changes in this proposed rule is contained 
in the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act, 
42 U.S.C. 5121 to 5207, as amended by the Post-Katrina Emergency 
Management Reform Act of 2006, 6 U.S.C. 701 et seq, the Security and 
Accountability For Every Port Act of 2006, 6 U.S.C. 901 note, the Local 
Community Recovery Act of 2006, Public Law 109-218, 120 Stat. 333, and 
the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006, Public 
Law 109-308, 120 Stat. 1725.


Alternatives:


One alternative is to revise some of the current regulatory 
requirements (such as application deadlines) in addition to 
implementing the amendments made to the Stafford Act by (1) the Post-
Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006 (PKEMRA), Public Law 
109-295, 120 Stat. 1394; 2) the Security and Accountability For Every 
Port Act of 2006 (SAFE Port Act), Public Law 109-

[[Page 79571]]

347, 120 Stat. 1884; 3) the Local Community Recovery Act of 2006, 
Public Law 109-218, 120 Stat. 333; and 4) the Pets Evacuation and 
Transportation Standards Act of 2006 (PETS Act), Public Law 109-308, 
120 Stat. 1725. Another alternative is to expand funding by expanding 
force account labor cost eligibility to Category A Projects (debris 
removal).


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The proposed rule is expected to have economic impacts on the public, 
grantees, subgrantees, and FEMA. The expected benefits are a reduction 
in property damages, societal losses, and losses to local businesses, 
as well as improved efficiency and consistency of the Public Assistance 
program. The total economic impact of the proposed rule is estimated to 
be approximately $50 million per year (in 2010 dollars). The primary 
economic impact of the proposed rule is the additional transfer of 
funding from FEMA through the Public Assistance program to grantees and 
subgrantees that is effectuated by this rulemaking. The proposed rule 
will also incur additional administrative costs to grantees and FEMA, 
which is estimated to be approximately $230,000, and $20,000 per year, 
respectively. However, most of the proposed changes are not expected to 
result in any additional cost to FEMA or any changes in the eligibility 
of assistance.


Risks:


This action does not adversely affect public health, safety, or the 
environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, Local, State, Tribal


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
Tod Wells
Recovery Directorate
Department of Homeland Security
Federal Emergency Management Agency
500 C Street SW.
Washington, DC 20472-3100
Phone: 202 646-3936
Fax: 202 646-3363
Email: tod.wells@dhs.gov
RIN: 1660-AA51
BILLING CODE 9110-9B-S

[[Page 79572]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT (HUD)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
The Regulatory Plan for the Department of Housing and Urban Development 
(HUD) for Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 highlights the most significant 
regulatory initiatives that HUD seeks to complete during the upcoming 
fiscal year. As the Federal agency that serves as the Nation's housing 
agency, committed to addressing the housing needs of Americans, 
promoting economic and community development, and enforcing the 
Nation's fair housing laws, HUD plays a significant role in the lives 
of families and communities throughout America. Through its programs, 
HUD works to strengthen the housing market and protect consumers; meet 
the need for quality affordable rental homes; utilize housing as a 
platform for improving quality of life; and build inclusive and 
sustainable communities free from discrimination.
The state of America's housing market plays a major role in shaping the 
well-being of individuals and families, the stability of neighborhoods, 
and the strength of America's economy. That is why the recent downturn 
of the housing market--with high rates of foreclosure, increases in 
vacant properties, and plummeting home values--has been so devastating 
for families and communities alike. During this most recent downturn in 
the housing market, millions of families have lost their homes, and at 
least 3 million homeowners remain at risk of losing their homes. The 
effect of the crisis on neighborhoods has been no less dramatic. The 
high rate of foreclosures has undermined the stability of many 
neighborhoods across America.
In 2009, HUD took a prominent role in the Administration's Federal 
recovery strategy by helping American families keep their homes and 
stabilizing neighborhoods hard hit by foreclosure. In the midst of a 
credit crunch, HUD's Federal Housing Administration (FHA) assisted 
nearly 1.95 million households in fiscal year 2009. HUD led efforts in 
foreclosure mitigation, homeownership counseling, and curbing mortgage 
abuse and lending discrimination. Through funds awarded to HUD under 
the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, HUD provided grant funds to 
State and local governments and nonprofit organizations to stabilize 
communities and neighborhoods negatively affected by foreclosure. HUD's 
efforts to help homeowners struggling to keep their homes and 
neighborhoods in distress did not abate in 2010. In 2010, HUD 
introduced its FHA Short Refinance option, which enables lenders to 
provide additional refinancing options to homeowners who owe more on 
their mortgages than their homes are worth. Through additional funding 
provided by Congress, HUD's Neighborhood Stabilization program 
continues into 2010 to help neighborhoods that have suffered from 
foreclosures.
Although homeownership historically has been the primary vehicle by 
which American families have built wealth, the recent crisis has shown 
that homeownership at any cost is fraught with peril. Americans need 
sustainable homeownership in which the costs are appropriate for a 
family's financial situation and the risks associated with 
homeownership are understood and manageable. In this regard, Secretary 
Donovan has directed that HUD must have a balanced, comprehensive 
national housing policy, one that supports and preserves sustainable 
homeownership, but also provides affordable rental housing, with a 
focus on preservation of developments that are integral to 
sustainability, such as those adjacent to significant transportation 
options, or with great access to jobs. Additionally, increasing 
affordable rental housing provides a means of addressing homelessness.
While HUD continues with programs to stem foreclosures and stabilize 
neighborhoods, with signs suggesting that the Nation is on the road to 
recovery, HUD is better able to direct efforts to implement the 
Secretary's balanced comprehensive national housing policy. HUD's 
regulatory plan for FY 2011 reflects one step in achieving this 
balanced, comprehensive national housing policy and is based on major 
legislation recently enacted that supports such a policy.
Priority: Providing Sustainable Homeownership Through Consumer 
Education
Consumer protections help prevent borrowers from falling victim to 
fraudulent loan products and aggressive marketing techniques. Such 
products and techniques contributed to the current housing crisis. One 
way to assist consumers from falling victims to fraudulent loan 
products is to ensure that they fully understand the home purchase 
process and the benefits but also the ongoing costs of homeownership. 
Such consumer education over the years has been increasingly provided 
by housing counselors, individuals trained and experienced in assisting 
individuals with mortgage-related issues, personal finances, and how to 
avoid default and foreclosure. Through HUD-funded and HUD-approved 
housing counseling agencies, HUD helps ensure that prospective and 
current homeowners have access to needed counseling services, as well 
as for those who rent.
The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Pub. L. 
111-203) signed into law by President Obama on July 21, 2010, 
recognizes the importance that housing counseling plays in protecting 
consumers from mortgage fraud and provides for the establishment of an 
Office of Housing Counseling within HUD. The new office's 
responsibilities include ensuring that homeownership counseling 
addresses the entire process of homeownership, including the decision 
to purchase a home, the selection and purchase of a home, issues 
arising during or affecting the period of ownership of a home 
(including refinancing, default and foreclosure, and other financial 
decisions), and the sale or other disposition of a home. The new office 
will also oversee that HUD-approved counseling agencies provide 
counseling on the benefits and costs of renting. HUD's new Office of 
Housing Counseling is charged with several other duties and 
responsibilities, and HUD's FY 2011 regulatory plan includes the 
rulemaking that will provide the regulatory foundation for the new 
Office of Housing Counseling to carry out all of its important duties 
and responsibilities.
Regulatory Action: Housing Counseling--New Program Requirements
HUD will issue a rule that reflects the authority of HUD's new Office 
of Housing Counseling. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer 
Protection Act provides that this office will establish, coordinate, 
and administer all regulations, requirements, standards, and 
performance measures under programs and laws administered by HUD that 
relate to housing counseling, homeownership counseling (including 
maintenance of homes), mortgage-related counseling (including home 
equity conversion mortgages and credit protection options to avoid 
foreclosure), and rental housing counseling, including the 
requirements, standards, and performance measures relating to housing 
counseling. The new law also directs HUD, through this office, to among 
other things, establish standards for the eligibility of organizations 
(including governmental

[[Page 79573]]

and nonprofit organizations) to receive HUD housing counseling grants; 
establish standards for materials and forms to be used, as appropriate, 
by organizations providing homeownership counseling services; provide 
for the certification of various computer software programs for 
consumers to use in evaluating different residential mortgage loan 
proposals; and ensure that counselors receiving funding under HUD's 
housing counseling grant program are properly certified, in accordance 
with standards established by HUD.
Priority: Improving Energy Efficiency in Housing
Despite significant improvements in housing quality in recent decades, 
much of the Nation's housing stock is not energy efficient. Increasing 
the Nation's affordable housing stock must also include establishing or 
improving energy efficiency in such housing. HUD initiated new energy 
efficiency programs through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 
of 2009 (Recovery Act). These included: A $250 million Green Retrofit 
Program for assisted multifamily buildings; $600 million for high 
performing energy retrofit and green projects in public housing; and 
additional formula and competitive programs that either contained 
incentives for energy efficiency and green, or could be utilized for 
that purpose. HUD estimates that up to 88,000 units may be retrofitted 
through these programs, for an estimated energy savings of $21 million.
While HUD's programs and initiatives under the Recovery Act focused on 
public and assisted multifamily housing, HUD's FY 2011 regulatory plan 
focuses on establishing a regulatory foundation to improve energy 
efficiency in FHA's title I Property Improvement Loan Insurance program 
(Title I program). Through the Title I program, FHA makes it easier for 
consumers to obtain affordable home improvement loans by insuring loans 
made by private lenders to improve properties that meet certain 
requirements. Title I program loans may be used to finance permanent 
property improvements that protect or improve the basic livability or 
utility of the property. HUD's FY 2011 rulemaking for the Title I 
program will provide for qualified borrowers to obtain low cost loans 
for specified energy improvements.
Regulatory Action: Title I Energy Retrofit Property Improvement Loans
HUD's rule amending the Title I program to provide for low cost loans 
for energy improvements has its foundation in the Recovery through 
Retrofit Report (Report), issued on October 19, 2009, by the Vice 
President and the White House Middle Class Task Force. The Report 
builds on the foundation laid out in the Recovery Act to expand green 
job opportunities in the United States and boost energy savings for 
middle class Americans by retrofitting homes for energy efficiency. The 
Report recognizes that making American homes and buildings more energy 
efficient presents an unprecedented opportunity for communities 
throughout the country. Home retrofits can potentially help people earn 
money, as home retrofit workers, while also helping them save money, by 
lowering their utility bills. The regulatory amendments to be addressed 
by this rulemaking will take into consideration the experience of HUD, 
Title I lenders, and consumers participating in HUD's Title I program 
Energy Retrofit Loan Demonstration to be launched late 2010. The 
demonstration will allow HUD to assess the success of the proposed 
modifications to its existing Title I program and address any 
programmatic concerns before undertaking final codification of 
regulatory amendments.
Aggregate Costs and Benefits
Executive Order 12866, as amended, requires the agency to provide its 
best estimate of the combined aggregate costs and benefits of all 
regulations included in the agency's regulatory plan that will be made 
effective in calendar year 2011. HUD expects that the neither the total 
economic costs nor the total efficiency gains will exceed $100 million.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HUD--Office of Housing (OH)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

91.  TITLE I ENERGY RETROFIT PROPERTY IMPROVEMENT LOANS (FR-
5445)

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


12 USC 1703; 42 USC 3535(d)


CFR Citation:


24 CFR 201


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule would amend HUD's regulations for the title I 
Property Improvement Loan Insurance program (Title I program) to better 
assist qualified borrowers obtain low-cost loans for specified energy 
improvements. Through the Title I program, FHA makes it easier for 
consumers to obtain affordable home improvement loans by insuring loans 
made by private lenders to improve properties that meet certain 
requirements. Title I program loans may be used to finance permanent 
property improvements that protect or improve the basic livability or 
utility of the property. The proposed rule is being issued in response 
to the Recovery through Retrofit Report (Report), issued on October 19, 
2009, by the Vice President and the White House Middle Class Task 
Force. The Report builds on the foundation laid out in the American 
Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Pub. L. 111-5; approved February 17, 
2009) to expand green job opportunities in the United States and boost 
energy savings for middle class Americans by retrofitting homes for 
energy efficiency. The Report recognizes that making American homes and 
buildings more energy efficient presents an unprecedented opportunity 
for communities throughout the country. Home retrofits can potentially 
help people earn money, as home retrofit workers, while also helping 
them save money, by lowering their utility bills. By encouraging 
nationwide weatherization of homes, workers of all skill levels will be 
trained, engaged, and will participate in ramping up a national home 
retrofit market.


The proposed regulatory amendments build upon the experience of HUD, 
title I lenders and consumers participating in the Department's Title I 
program Energy Retrofit Loan Demonstration. Before undertaking 
rulemaking to codify the regulatory amendments on a permanent, 
nationwide basis, HUD decided to conduct a demonstration involving a 
limited number of lenders and areas of the country. The demonstration 
will allow HUD to assess the success of the proposed modifications to 
the existing program and to address any programmatic concerns before 
authorizing its use throughout the country.

[[Page 79574]]

Statement of Need:


The Report identified several barriers that have prevented a self-
sustaining retrofit market from forming. Among other barriers, the 
Report found that homeowners face high upfront costs and many are 
concerned that they will be prevented from recouping the value of their 
investment if they choose to sell their home. The upfront costs of home 
retrofit projects are often beyond the average homeowner's budget. The 
report found that the solution to the lack of home energy retrofit 
financing is to make such financing more accessible and more consumer 
friendly. The proposed regulatory amendments will help to address these 
needs by enabling qualified borrowers obtain title I low cost loans for 
energy-related home improvements.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Title I program is authorized under title I, section 2, of the 
National Housing Act (12 U.S.C. 1703). Specifically, under section 2(a) 
of the National Housing Act, the Secretary of HUD is authorized to help 
homeowners finance alterations, repairs, and improvements in connection 
with existing structures or manufactured homes. HUD's implementing 
regulations are codified at 24 CFR part 201.


Alternatives:


The primary alternative HUD considered to amending the Title I 
regulations was use of the existing FHA Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM) 
program. The FHA EEM program allows a borrower to finance and 
incremental amount on their first mortgage to invest in energy 
efficiency, with an additional appraisal or further credit 
qualification, provided that the benefit of projected energy savings 
exceed the cost of the improvements, as estimated by an energy audit, 
HUD ultimately determined that the EEM was not an optimal vehicle for 
achieving the energy innovation goals of this rule. First the FHA EEM 
is, by definition, a negative equity instrument, and negative equity is 
extremely problematic in the current housing market. Another 
problematic feature of the EEM program is that the financing may exceed 
the benefit from and useful life of the measures, and result in a total 
net cost to the consumer that does not represent the optimal use of 
funds.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The aggregate net benefits are obtained by multiplying the individual 
net benefits by the expected number of loans and adding the expected 
social benefits of reduced energy consumption. As a base case, HUD 
assumes a consumer household with annual savings of $1000, a zero 
percent price growth and a 7 percent discount rate. The present value 
of a technical retrofit for this base case scenario is $11,400. 
Assuming a rebound effect of 30 percent yields a comfort benefit of 
$3,400 and energy savings of $8,000 per participant (the ``rebound 
effect'' refers to the fact that the reaction of the consumer to the 
energy-saving technology will not necessarily reduce energy consumption 
by what is technically possible). Approximately 24,000 loans are 
expected over two years. For the base case scenario, this would equal 
$41 million comfort benefits and $96 million in energy saving for each 
year of the program. The benefits of the FHA program may not equal the 
sum of the benefits of all retrofits financed through the program, but 
only reflect the benefits of the retrofits that would not have occurred 
without the program; however, the existence of significant market 
imperfections and the lack of affordable financing makes it reasonable 
to assume that a large proportion, if not all of the loans, will 
generate benefits. The cost of receiving the energy-savings is the 
upfront investment plus the costs of financing the investment. the cost 
per investment is thus equal to the size of the loan.


Risks:


This rule poses no risk to public health, safety, or the environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Karin Hill
Director, Office of Single Family Program Development
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Office of Housing
451 7th Street SW.
Washington, DC 20410
Phone: 202 708-4308
RIN: 2502-AI93
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

HUD--OH

<###DOC>

92.  HOUSING COUNSELING: NEW PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS (FR-5446)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


12 USC 1701x; 42 USC 3535(d)


CFR Citation:


24 CFR 214


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This proposed rule would amend HUD's regulations for the Housing 
Counseling program to address the new program requirements and 
certification requirements for HUD approved housing counselors as 
provided by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection 
Act (Pub. L. 111-203, approved July 21, 2010). The proposed rule would 
also reflect the authority and responsibility of HUD's new Office of 
Housing Counseling to coordinate and administer HUD's Housing 
Counseling program.


HUD's Housing Counseling program is authorized by section 106 of the 
Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 (12 U.S.C. 1701x). Section 
106 authorizes HUD to provide, make grants to, or contract with public 
or private organizations to provide a broad range of housing counseling 
services to homeowners and tenants to assist them in improving their 
housing conditions and in meeting the responsibilities of tenancy or 
homeownership. The regulations contained in this part prescribe the 
procedures and requirements by which the Housing Counseling program 
will be administered. These regulations apply to all agencies 
participating in HUD's Housing Counseling program.


The proposed regulatory amendments will implement the changes made to

[[Page 79575]]

section 106 of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 by the 
Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, which 
include directing that HUD-approved housing counseling agencies provide 
counseling that addresses the entire process of homeownership and that 
HUD establish materials and forms to be used by HUD-approved housing 
counselors.


Statement of Need:


The rulemaking is needed because HUD's current regulations for the 
Housing Counseling program do not reflect the changes made to section 
106 of section 106 of the Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 by 
the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform. The changes enhance the choices and 
protections afforded borrowers participating in HUD's single family 
mortgage insurance programs.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Housing Counseling program is authorized by section 106 of the 
Housing and Urban Development Act of 1968 (12 U.S.C. 1701x), as 
recently amended by subtitle D of title XIV of the Dodd-Frank Wall 
Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act.


Alternatives:


As noted, the purpose of this rule is to update HUD's regulations that 
do not reflect current statutory requirements. While certain statutory 
changes may be implemented through HUD's annual competitive allocation 
of fund for the Housing Counseling program provided by appropriations 
acts, the regulation nevertheless needs to be amended to reflect the 
program changed made by changes to the underlying statutory authority.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The benefit of the proposed regulatory amendments will be to strengthen 
the protection of consumers, primarily those who are prospective 
homeowners but also current homeowners through the enhanced counseling 
requirements provided by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer 
Protection Act. The more comprehensive counseling services directed to 
be provided and the review of materials and forms by HUD designed to 
better educate consumers about homeownership are expected to produce 
homebuyers better educated about the homeownership process and less 
vulnerable to fraudulent mortgage practices. Costs are expected to 
minimal. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act 
authorizes funding to help establish HUD's new Office of Housing 
Counseling and the additional functions to be carried out by this 
office. The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act 
also authorizes additional funding for the expansion of services to be 
carried out by HUD-approved counseling agencies.


Risks:


This rule poses no risk to public health, safety, or the environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Ruth Roman
Director, Office of Housing Counseling
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Office of Housing
451 7th Street SW.
Washington, DC 20410-0001
Phone: 202 402-2112
RIN: 2502-AI94
BILLING CODE 4210-67-S

[[Page 79576]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR (DOI)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
The Department of the Interior (DOI) is the principal Federal steward 
of our Nation's public lands and resources, including many of our 
cultural treasures. We serve as trustee to Native Americans and Alaska 
natives and are responsible for relations with the island territories 
under United States jurisdiction. We manage more than 500 million acres 
of Federal lands, including 392 park units, 548 wildlife refuges, and 
approximately 1.7 billion of submerged offshore acres. This includes 
some of the highest quality renewable energy resources available to 
help the United States achieve the President's goal of energy 
independence, including geothermal, solar, and wind.
The Department protects and recovers endangered species; protects 
natural, historic, and cultural resources; manages water projects that 
are a life line and economic engine for many communities in the West; 
manages forests and fights wildfires; manages Federal energy resources; 
educates children in Indian schools; and provides recreational 
opportunities for over 400 million visitors annually in our national 
parks, public lands, national wildlife refuges, and recreation areas.
We will continue to review and update our regulations and policies to 
ensure that they are effective and efficient, and that they promote 
accountability and sustainability. We will emphasize regulations and 
policies that:
 Promote environmentally responsible, safe, and balanced 
            development of renewable and conventional energy on our 
            public lands and the Outer Continental Shelf;
 Use the best available science to ensure that public resources 
            are protected, conserved, and used wisely;
 Adopt performance approaches focused on achieving cost-
            effective, timely results;
 Improve the nation-to-nation relationship with American Indian 
            tribes;
 Promote partnerships with States, tribes, local governments, 
            other groups, and individuals to achieve common goals;
 Promote transparency, fairness, accountability, and the 
            highest ethical standards while maintaining performance 
            goals.
Major Regulatory Areas
DOI bureaus implement legislatively mandated programs through their 
regulations. Some of these regulatory activities include:
 Developing onshore and offshore energy, including renewable, 
            minerals, oil and gas, and other energy resources;
 Managing migratory birds and preserving marine mammals and 
            endangered species;
 Managing dedicated lands, such as national parks, wildlife 
            refuges, National Landscape Conservation System lands, and 
            American Indian trust lands;
 Managing public lands open to multiple use;
 Managing revenues from American Indian and Federal minerals;
 Fulfilling trust and other responsibilities pertaining to 
            American Indians;
 Managing natural resource damage assessments; and
 Managing assistance programs.
Regulatory Policy
How DOI regulatory priorities support the President's energy, resource 
management, environmental sustainability, and economic recovery goals.
DOI's regulatory programs seek to operate programs transparently, 
efficiently, and cooperatively while maximizing protection of our land, 
resources, and environment in a fiscally responsible way by:
(1) Protecting Natural, Cultural, and Heritage Resources.
The Department's mission includes protecting and providing access to 
our Nation's natural and cultural heritage and honoring our trust 
responsibilities to tribes. We are committed to this mission and to 
applying laws and regulations fairly and effectively. Our priorities 
include protecting public health and safety, restoring and maintaining 
public lands, protecting threatened and endangered species, 
ameliorating land- and resource-management problems on public lands, 
and ensuring accountability and compliance with Federal laws and 
regulations.
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Wildlife Program continues to focus 
on maintaining and managing wildlife habitat to ensure self-sustaining 
populations and a natural abundance and diversity of wildlife resources 
on public lands. BLM-managed lands are vital to game species and 
hundreds of species of non-game mammals, reptiles, and amphibians. In 
order to provide for long-term protection of wildlife resources, 
especially given other mandated land use requirements, the Wildlife 
Program supports aggressive habitat conservation and restoration 
activities, many funded by partnerships with Federal, State, and non-
governmental organizations. For instance, the Wildlife Program is 
restoring wildlife habitat across a multi-State region to support 
species that depend upon sagebrush vegetation. Projects are tailored to 
address regional issues such as fire (as in the western portion of the 
sagebrush biome) or habitat degradation and loss (as in the eastern 
portion of the sagebrush biome). Additionally, BLM undertakes habitat 
improvement projects in partnership with a variety of stakeholders and 
consistent with State fish and game wildlife action plans and local 
working group plans.
The National Park Service (NPS) is working with BLM and the U.S. Fish 
and Wildlife Service to finalize a rule implementing Public Law 106-
206, which directs the Secretary to establish a system of location fees 
for commercial filming and still photography activities on public 
lands. While commercial filming and still photography are generally 
allowed on Federal lands, managing this activity through a permitting 
process will minimize damage to cultural or natural resources and 
interference with other visitors to the area. This regulation would 
standardize location fee rates and collection for all DOI agencies.
The Park Service is developing a new winter use regulation for 
Yellowstone and Grand Teton National Parks and the John D. Rockefeller, 
Jr., Memorial Parkway. This regulation will replace an interim rule 
expiring at the end of the 2010 to 2011 winter season. It will 
establish an average daily entrance limit on the number of snowmobiles 
and snow coaches that may enter the park, and will continue the limit 
of 10 snowmobiles for groups and guided tours. As the first steps 
toward developing this new rule, NPS will publish a proposed rule in 
the spring of 2011.
In 2008, in consultation with an interagency work group, NPS began 
developing a proposed rule to provide more efficient and cost-effective 
management of federally owned archaeological collections. At present,

[[Page 79577]]

there is no legal procedure to deaccession items in Federal collections 
that are of ``insufficient archaeological interest;'' i.e., they are of 
no further value to the science of archaeology or to the integrity of 
the collection in which they are contained. This rule would free up 
space in collections and allow custodians to allocate more time and 
effort to care of remaining items while ensuring proper disposition of 
those archaeological items.
The rule also requires assigning a specific individual to be 
accountable for proper disposition. This complicated rule is now 
undergoing final review and should be ready for publication in early 
2011.
(2) Sustainably Using Energy, Water, and Natural Resources.
The Bureau of Land Management has identified a total of approximately 
20.6 million acres of public land with wind energy potential in the 11 
western states and approximately 29.5 million acres with solar energy 
potential in the six southwestern states. There are over 140 million 
acres of public land in western states and Alaska with geothermal 
resource potential. There is also significant wind and wave potential 
in our offshore waters. The National Renewable Energy Lab, a Department 
of Energy national laboratory, has identified more than 1,000 gigawatts 
of wind potential off the Atlantic coast--roughly equivalent to the 
Nation's existing installed electric generating capacity--and more than 
900 gigawatts of wind potential off the Pacific Coast. Because public 
lands are extensive and widely distributed, the Department has an 
important role, in consultation with Federal, State, regional, and 
local authorities, in siting new transmission lines needed to bring 
renewable energy assets to load centers.
Since the beginning of the Obama Administration, the Department has 
focused on renewable energy issues and has established priorities for 
environmentally responsible development of renewable energy on our 
public lands and the outer continental shelf. Industry has started to 
respond by investing in development of wind farms off the Atlantic 
seacoast and solar, wind, and geothermal energy facilities throughout 
the west. Power generation from these new energy sources produces 
virtually no greenhouse gases, and when done in an environmentally 
sensitive manner, harnesses with minimum impact abundant, renewable 
energy that nature itself provides. The Department will continue its 
intra- and inter-departmental efforts to move forward with the 
environmentally responsible review and permitting of renewable energy 
projects on public lands.
On March 11, 2009, the Secretary issued his first Secretarial Order 
that made facilitating production, development, and delivery of 
renewable energy on public lands and the OCS top priorities at the 
Department. In accomplishing these goals, the Department will protect 
our signature landscapes, natural resources, wildlife, and cultural 
resources and will collaborate with relevant Federal, State, tribal, 
and other agencies. The Secretarial Order also established an energy 
and climate change task force that draws from the leadership of each of 
the bureaus and is responsible for:
 Quantifying potential contributions of renewable energy 
            resources on our public lands and the OCS; and
 Identifying and prioritizing specific areas on public lands 
            where the Department can facilitate a rapid and responsible 
            increase in production of renewable energy.
On April 29, 2009, the former Minerals Management Service published a 
final rule to establish a program to grant leases, easements, and 
rights-of-way for renewable energy projects on the Outer Continental 
Shelf (OCS). These regulations will ensure the orderly, safe, and 
environmentally responsible development of renewable energy sources on 
the OCS.
(3) Empowering People and Communities.
The Department encourages public participation in the regulatory 
process by seeking public input on a variety of regulatory issues. For 
example, every year the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) establishes 
migratory bird hunting seasons in partnership with flyway councils 
composed of State fish and wildlife agencies. FWS also holds a series 
of public meetings to give other interested parties, including hunters 
and other groups, opportunities to participate in establishing the 
upcoming season's regulations.
Similarly, the Bureau of Land Management uses Resource Advisory 
Councils made up of affected parties to help prepare land management 
plans and regulations that it issues.
The National Park Service (NPS) has begun revising its rules on non-
Federal development of gas and oil in units of the National Park 
System. Of the approximately 700 gas and oil wells in 13 NPS units, 55 
per cent, or 385 wells, are exempt from current regulations. NPS is 
revising the regulations to improve protection of NPS resources and 
bring those 385 wells under the regulatory umbrella. NPS actively 
sought public input into designing the rule and published an Advance 
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking with a comment period from November 15, 
2009, through January 25, 2010. Interested members of the public were 
able to make suggestions on the content of the regulation, which NPS 
will consider in writing the proposed rule. After developing a proposed 
rule, NPS will solicit further public comment. NPS expects to publish a 
proposed rule in mid 2011.
Accountability and Sustainability Through Regulatory Efficiency
We are using the regulatory process to improve results while easing 
regulatory burdens. For instance, the Endangered Species Act (ESA) 
allows for delisting threatened and endangered species if they no 
longer need the protection of the ESA. We are working to identify 
species for which delisting or downlisting (reclassification from 
endangered to threatened) may be appropriate.
The Fish and Wildlife Service has found that making listing decisions 
under the Endangered Species Act in Hawaii on a traditional, species-
by-species basis is inefficient, since very similar information and 
analysis would be repeated in each rule. To improve efficiency, FWS is 
making listing decisions for 48 species on the island of Kauai in one 
regulatory package. This allows the Service to address the existing 
backlog of candidate species more quickly.
Most candidate species on the Hawaiian Islands face nearly identical 
threats and are only found in the few remaining native-dominated 
ecological communities. The impacts of these threats are well 
understood at the community level, while their impacts to the 
individual candidate species are relatively less studied. Because this 
ecological community approach focuses on conserving the key physical 
and biological components of native communities and ecosystems, it may 
preclude the need to list additional species found in the same 
ecological communities. Recovery plans developed in response to the 
Kauai listing will focus conservation efforts on protection and 
restoration of ecosystem processes, allowing us to more efficiently 
address

[[Page 79578]]

common threats in the most important areas.
DOI bureaus work to make our regulations easier to comply with and 
understand. Our regulatory process ensures that bureaus share ideas on 
how to reduce regulatory burdens while meeting the requirements of the 
laws they enforce and improving their stewardship of the environment 
and resources. Results include:
 Effective stewardship of our Nation's resources in a way that 
            is responsive to the needs of small businesses;
 Increased benefits per dollars spent by carefully evaluating 
            the economic effects of planned rules; and
 Improved compliance and transparency by use of plain language 
            in our regulations and guidance documents.
Bureaus and Offices Within DOI
The following brief descriptions summarize the regulatory functions of 
DOI's major regulatory bureaus and offices.
Bureau of Indian Affairs
The Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) administers and manages 56 million 
acres of land held in trust by the United States for Indians and Indian 
tribes, providing services to approximately 1.9 million Indians and 
Alaska Natives, and maintaining a government-to-government relationship 
with the 565 federally recognized Indian tribes. BIA's mission is to 
enhance the quality of life, to promote economic opportunity, and to 
carry out the responsibility to protect and improve the trust assets of 
American Indians, Indian tribes, and Alaska Natives, as well as to 
provide quality education opportunities to students in Indian schools.
In the coming year, BIA will continue its regulatory focus on improved 
management of trust responsibilities and promotion of economic 
development in Indian communities. In addition, we will focus on 
updating Indian education regulations and on other regulatory changes 
to increase transparency in support of the President's Open Government 
Initiative.
With the input of tribal leaders, individual Indian beneficiaries, and 
other subject matter experts, BIA has been examining ways to better 
serve its beneficiaries. The American Indian Probate Reform Act of 2004 
(AIPRA) made clear that regulatory changes were necessary to update the 
manner in which we meet our trust management responsibilities. We have 
promulgated regulations implementing the probate-related provisions of 
AIPRA and will now focus on regulations to implement other AIPRA 
provisions related to managing Indian land.
The focus on promoting economic development in Indian communities is a 
core component of BIA's mission. Economic development initiatives can 
attract businesses to Indian communities and fund services that support 
the health and well-being of tribal members.By providing the tools 
necessary to promote economic development, economic development can 
enable tribes to attain self-sufficiency, strengthen their governments, 
and reduce crime.
Indian education is a top priority of the Assistant Secretary--Indian 
Affairs. For this reason, we will review Indian education regulations 
to ensure that they adequately support efforts to provide students of 
BIA-funded schools with the best education possible.
Finally, BIA's regulatory focus on increasing transparency implements 
the President's Open Government Initiative. We will ensure that all 
regulations that we draft or revise meet high standards of readability 
and accurately and clearly describe BIA processes.
BIA's regulatory priorities are to:
 Develop regulations to meet the Indian trust reform goals for 
            land consolidation and land use management.
 BIA is developing amendments to regulations in the areas of land title 
            and records, conveyances of trust or restricted land, 
            leasing, grazing, trespass, rights-of-way, and energy and 
            minerals. Together, these regulatory changes will provide 
            the Department with the tools it needs to better serve 
            beneficiaries and will standardize procedures for 
            consistent execution of fiduciary responsibilities across 
            the BIA.
 Revise loan guaranty regulations to promote private investment 
            in Indian Country.
 BIA plans to propose a rule that would address the chronic lack of 
            business lending faced by Indian communities. While BIA 
            currently operates a successful loan guaranty, insurance, 
            and interest subsidy program, the program's current 
            regulations are best suited to assisting for-profit 
            businesses to secure loans in the $250,000 to $10 million 
            range. Revisions to the rule would:

- Promote financing for smaller loans (under $250,000), which are important 
for sparking economic development, by allowing community development 
financial institutions to obtain program guarantees and insurance and by 
using fiscal transfer agents to encourage financing for small loans.

- Obtain funding for higher cost projects (above $10 million)-including 
infrastructure projects, energy projects, and other large projects 
requiring a longer repayment horizon-by offering a Federal Government 
guarantee for taxable tribal bonds. The guarantee would help ensure bond 
placement, decrease market rates charged for bonds, and help tribes become 
established in the bond market.

- Extend eligibility for the program to non-profit borrowers who make a 
significant economic contribution to the Indian reservation or tribal 
service area.

These changes are authorized by the Indian Financing Act, as amended by 
the Native American Technical Corrections Act of 2006.
 Identify and develop regulatory changes necessary for improved 
            Indian education.
 BIA is currently reviewing regulations addressing grants to tribally 
            controlled community colleges and other Indian education 
            regulations. The review will identify provisions that need 
            to be updated to comply with applicable statutes and ensure 
            that the proper regulatory framework is in place to support 
            students of Bureau-funded schools.
 Develop regulatory changes to reform the process for Federal 
            acknowledgment of Indian tribes.
 Over the years, BIA has received significant comments from American 
            Indian groups and members of Congress on the Federal 
            acknowledgment process established by 25 CFR part 83. Most 
            of these comments claim that the current process is 
            cumbersome and overly restrictive. BIA is reviewing the 
            current Federal acknowledgment regulation and will develop 
            any necessary regulatory changes.
 Revise regulations governing administrative appeals and other 
            processes to increase transparency.
 BIA is making a concentrated effort to improve the readability and 
            precision of its regulations. Because trust beneficiaries 
            often turn to the regulations for guidance on how a given 
            BIA process works, BIA is

[[Page 79579]]

            ensuring that each revised regulation is written as clearly 
            as possible and accurately reflects the current 
            organization of the Bureau. A few of the regulations BIA 
            will be focusing this effort on include the regulation 
            governing administrative appeals (25 CFR part 2), the land 
            use management regulations mentioned above, and regulations 
            addressing various Indian services.
The Bureau of Land Management
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages the 245-million-acre 
National System of Public Lands, located primarily in the western 
States, including Alaska, and the 700-million-acre subsurface mineral 
estate located throughout the Nation. BLM's complex multiple-use 
mission affects the lives of a great number of Americans, including 
those who live near and visit the public lands, as well as millions of 
Americans who benefit from commodities, such as minerals, energy, or 
timber, produced from the lands' rich resources.
BLM's multiple-use mission conserves the lands' natural and cultural 
resources and sustains the health and productivity of the public lands 
for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. BLM 
manages such varied uses as energy and mineral development, outdoor 
recreation, livestock grazing, and forestry and woodlands products. 
This year, BLM has celebrated the 10th anniversary of the National 
Landscape Conservation System (NLCS), created in 2000 to highlight the 
conservation side of the Agency's multiple-use mandate. Last year, 
Congress, through the passage of the Omnibus Public Land Management Act 
(Pub. L. 111-11), affirmed its support of BLM-managed NLCS in statute 
and added 929,000 acres of wilderness, one national monument, four 
national conservation areas, 363 miles of wild and scenic rivers, and 
40 miles of national scenic and historic trails to the NLCS. More than 
880 NLCS treasured landscapes now span the Nation from Florida to 
Alaska.
BLM is analyzing proposals for increasing renewable energy development 
on public lands. The quality of life that Americans enjoy today depends 
largely upon a stable and abundant supply of affordable energy. Because 
BLM manages more Federal land than any other agency--more than 245 
million surface acres and 700 million subsurface acres of mineral 
estate--it plays a key role in ensuring that the Nation's energy needs 
are met by managing both Federal renewable and non-renewable sources of 
energy. This is accomplished in an environmentally and fiscally sound 
way that protects our natural resources and critical wildlife habitat 
for such species as the sage-grouse and lynx. Although renewable energy 
can help reduce greenhouse gases, its development is not without 
environmental impacts. Large, commercial-scale solar energy plants, for 
example, can have long-term environmental impacts and may override 
other uses of the land.
Another BLM priority is siting and authorizing transmission corridors 
to assist the national effort to move renewable energy from production 
sites to market. BLM has already accomplished a significant step in 
this direction by designating more than 5,000 miles of energy transport 
corridors for the West-wide Energy Corridors. Development of actual 
transmission lines is done by authorizing rights-of-way across public 
lands.
In an effort to prioritize its complex, multiple-use responsibilities, 
BLM has identified several emphasis areas to help explain its 
regulatory priorities. The following describes these programs and 
initiatives and reflects their interrelationship with the following 
priorities of the Secretary of the Interior:
 Energy independence
 Treasured landscapes
 Native American Nations
Treasured landscapes
Protecting the landscapes of the National System of Public Lands 
involves numerous BLM programs as the Agency moves toward a holistic, 
landscape-level approach to managing multiple public land uses. BLM 
also engages partners interested in working on a broader scale across 
jurisdictional lines to achieve a common landscape vision. For the past 
several years, BLM, which manages the largest amount and the greatest 
diversity of fish and wildlife habitat of any Federal agency, has 
focused on restoring healthy landscapes in a number of ways, including:
 Reducing the number of wild horses and burros on public lands, 
            particularly in areas most affected by drought and 
            wildfire. Maintaining the wild horse and burro population 
            at appropriate management levels is critical in the effort 
            to conserve forage resources that also sustain native 
            wildlife and livestock.
 Restoring habitat for sensitive, rare, threatened, and 
            endangered species, such as sage-grouse, desert tortoise, 
            and salmon.
 Supporting greater biodiversity through noxious weed and 
            invasive species treatments to bring back native plants.
 Improving water quality by restoring riparian areas and 
            protecting watersheds. Enhanced water quality aids in the 
            restoration of habitat for fish and other aquatic and 
            riparian species.
 Conducting post-fire recovery efforts to promote healthy 
            landscapes and discourage the spread of invasive species.
Native American Nations
BLM consults with Indian tribes on a government-to-government basis 
under multiple authorities and is continually working to assess and 
improve its tribal consultation practices. BLM held listening sessions 
throughout the West on this important issue in 2009 and 2010 and 
received many valuable comments. BLM has continued its efforts to 
improve its tribal consultation practices by participating with the 
Department in multiple listening sessions with tribes throughout the 
country.
The Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA), 
enacted in 1990, addresses the rights of lineal descendants, Indian 
tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations to certain Native American 
human remains, funerary objects, associated funerary objects, sacred 
objects, and objects of cultural patrimony with which they are 
affiliated. The statute and implementing regulations represent a 
careful balance between the legitimate interests of lineal descendants, 
Indian tribes, and Native Hawaiian organizations to control the remains 
of their ancestors and cultural property and the legitimate public 
interests in scientific and educational information associated with the 
human remains and cultural items.
BLM is complying with the new NAGPRA regulations, including 
inventorying and repatriating human remains and other cultural items 
that are in BLM museum collections. BLM also consults with Indian 
tribes on implementing appropriate actions when human remains and other 
cultural items subject to NAGPRA are inadvertently discovered or 
intentionally excavated on the public lands.
Additionally, BLM, in cooperation with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, 
helps tribes and individual Indian allottees

[[Page 79580]]

develop their solid and fluid mineral resources. BLM is responsible for 
development, product measurement, and inspection and enforcement of 
extracting operations of the mineral estate on trust properties.
BLM's regulatory priorities
BLM's regulatory focus is directed primarily by the priorities of the 
President and Congress, which include:
 Facilitating domestic production of various sources of energy, 
            including biomass, wind, solar, and other alternative 
            sources.
 Providing for a wide variety of public uses while maintaining 
            the long-term health and diversity of the land.
 Preserving significant natural, cultural, and historic 
            resource values.
 Understanding the arid, semi-arid, arctic, and other 
            ecosystems that BLM manages.
 Using the best scientific and technical information to make 
            resource management decisions.
 Understanding the needs of the people who use and enjoy BLM-
            managed public lands and providing them with quality 
            service.
 Securing the recovery of a fair return for using publicly 
            owned resources and avoiding the creation of long-term 
            liabilities for American taxpayers.
 Resolving problems and implementing decisions in cooperation 
            with other agencies, States, tribal governments, and the 
            public.
In developing regulations, BLM recognizes the need to ensure 
communication, coordination, and consultation with the public, 
including affected interests, tribes, and other stakeholders. BLM also 
works to draft regulations that are easy for the public to understand 
and that provide clarity to those most affected by them.
BLM's specific regulatory priorities include:
Revising onshore oil and gas operating standards
BLM expects to publish rules to revise several existing onshore oil and 
gas operating orders and propose one new onshore order. Onshore orders 
establish requirements and minimum standards and provide standard 
operating procedures. The orders are binding on operating rights owners 
and operators of Federal and Indian (except the Osage Nation) oil and 
gas leases and on all wells and facilities on State or private lands 
committed to Federal agreements. BLM is responsible for ensuring that 
oil or gas produced and sold from Federal or Indian leases is 
accurately measured for quantity and quality. The volume and quality of 
oil or gas sold from leases is key to determining the proper royalty to 
be paid by the lessee to the Office of Natural Resources Revenue. 
Existing Onshore Orders Number 3, 4, and 5 would be revised to use new 
industry standards so that they reflect current operating procedures 
and to require that proper verification and accounting practices are 
used consistently. New Onshore Order Number 9 would cover waste 
prevention and beneficial use. The revisions would ensure that proper 
royalties are paid on oil and gas removed from Federal and Trust lands.
Revising coal-management regulations
BLM plans to publish a proposed rule to amend the coal-management 
regulations that pertain to the administration of Federal coal leases 
and logical mining units. The rule would primarily implement provisions 
of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 that pertain to administering coal 
leases. The rule also would clarify the royalty rate applicable to 
continuous highwall mining, a new coal-mining method in use on some 
Federal coal leases.
Publishing rules on paleontological resources preservation
The 2009 omnibus public lands law included provisions on permitting for 
the collection of paleontological resources. BLM and the National Park 
Service are co-leads of a team with the U. S. Forest Service that will 
be drafting a paleontological resources rule. The rule would address 
the protection of paleontological resources and how BLM would permit 
the collection of these resources. The rule would also address other 
issues such as administering permits, casual collection of rocks and 
minerals, hobby collection of common invertebrate plants and fossils, 
and civil and criminal penalties for violation of these rules.
Revising the timber sale contract extension regulations
BLM regulations currently allow timber sale contract extensions under 
very limited circumstances and specifically do not allow extensions for 
``market fluctuations.'' Nor do the regulations allow any reduction of 
contract value due to declines in the lumber market. BLM plans to 
publish a rule that would amend the forest product disposal regulations 
that pertain to the administration of forest product contracts. The 
recent decline in the housing industry has resulted in a more severe 
decline in the timber market than historically experienced, leaving 
many purchasers of BLM timber sale contracts without a reasonable 
market in which to sell harvested timber. The revised rule would allow 
BLM to extend contracts under specified circumstances. Regulatory 
changes would provide BLM more options to help maintain the logging and 
sawmilling infrastructure needed to manage the 66 million acres of 
timber and woodland resources on the public lands.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement
On April 20, 2010, an explosion and fire erupted on an offshore 
drilling rig in the Gulf of Mexico called the Deepwater Horizon. As a 
result, the Secretary recommended a series of steps to immediately 
improve the safety of offshore oil and gas drilling operations in 
Federal waters and a suspension of certain permitting and drilling 
activities until the safety measures can be implemented and further 
analysis completed. Recommended actions include prescriptive near-term 
requirements, longer-term performance-based safety measures, and one or 
more Department-led working groups to evaluate longer-term safety 
issues.
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement 
(BOEM) replaced the former Minerals Management Service (MMS) and will 
strengthen oversight and policing of offshore oil and gas development. 
The program is national in scope and has two major program offices:
1) The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will function as the resource 
            manager for the conventional and renewable energy and 
            mineral resources on the outer continental shelf (OCS). It 
            will foster environmentally responsible and appropriate 
            development of the OCS for both conventional and renewable 
            energy and mineral resources in an efficient and effective 
            manner that ensures fair market value for the rights 
            conveyed.
2) The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement will apply 
            independent regulation, oversight, and enforcement powers 
            to promote and enforce safety in offshore energy 
            exploration and production operations and ensure that 
            potentially negative environmental impacts on marine 
            ecosystems and coastal

[[Page 79581]]

            communities are appropriately considered and mitigated.
In 2009, MMS completed a major milestone by developing and codifying 
the regulatory framework for renewable energy projects on the OCS. We 
are continuing to implement the regulatory provisions for developing 
the Nation's offshore wind, wave, and ocean current resources in a safe 
and environmentally sound manner.
Our regulatory focus for fiscal year 2011 is directed by Presidential 
and legislative priorities that emphasize contributing to America's 
energy supply, protecting the environment, and ensuring a fair return 
for taxpayers for energy production from Federal and Indian lands.
Our regulatory priorities are to:
 Establish New Requirements for Safety Measures for Oil and Gas 
            Operations.
 This interim final rule published on October 15, 2010 (74 FR 63610). 
            It implements certain safety measures outlined in a Safety 
            Measures Report to the President dated May 27, 2010, which 
            was prepared in response to the Deepwater Horizon event. 
            The recommendations implemented in this interim rule revise 
            regulations related to subsea and surface blowout 
            preventers, well casing and cementing, secondary 
            intervention, unplanned disconnects, recordkeeping, well 
            completion, and well plugging.
 Develop a Comprehensive Safety and Environmental Management 
            Program for Offshore Operations and Facilities.
 Promulgate a final rule for all OCS oil and gas operations and 
            facilities under BOEM's jurisdiction including, but not 
            limited to, drilling, production, construction, well 
            workover, well completion, pipelines, fixed and floating 
            facilities, mobile offshore drilling units, and lifting 
            activities. This rule adds requirements for recordkeeping 
            and documentation, hazards analysis, and job safety 
            analysis for activities identified or discussed in the 
            Safety and Environmental Management System program. It 
            published on October 14, 2010 (74 FR 63346).
 Develop additional rules and regulations as a result of 
            ongoing reviews of BOEMRE's offshore regulatory regime.
 Several investigations and reviews of BOEMRE are being conducted by 
            various agencies and entities--including the Safety 
            Oversight Board, the Office of Inspector General, the 
            President's Deepwater Horizon Commission, the National 
            Academy of Engineering, and the joint BOEMRE/USCG 
            investigation of Deepwater Horizon. Some of these 
            investigations and reviews focus narrowly on the Deepwater 
            Horizon explosion; others are broader in focus and include 
            many aspects of BOEMRE's current regulatory system. We 
            expect that recommendations for regulatory changes--both 
            substantive and procedural--will be generated by these 
            investigations and reviews, and will need to be reviewed, 
            analyzed, and potentially incorporated in new or modified 
            regulations.
 Determine the proper value of coal for advanced royalty 
            purposes.
 Implementing requirements in the Energy Policy Act of 2005, these 
            regulations will provide clarification by re-designating 
            and amending a BLM coal valuation directive. The rule will 
            provide a needed alternative method to determine the value 
            of coal for advanced royalty purposes.
Office of Natural Resource Revenue
The revenue responsibilities of the former MMS will now be located in 
the Office of Natural Resource Revenue (ONRR), which will continue to 
collect, account for, and disburse more than $13 billion per year in 
revenues from Federal offshore energy and mineral leases and from 
onshore mineral leases on Federal and Indian lands. The program will 
operate Nationwide and will be primarily responsible for timely and 
accurate collection, distribution, and accounting for revenues 
associated with mineral and energy production. The regulatory program 
of ONRR will seek to:
 Simplify valuation regulations.
ONRR plans to simplify the regulations at 30 CFR part 206 for 
establishing the value for royalty purposes of oil, natural gas, coal, 
and geothermal produced from Federal and Indian leases. Additionally, 
the proposed rule would consolidate sections of the regulations common 
to all minerals such as definitions and instructions regarding how a 
payor should request a valuation determination.
 Finalize debt collection regulations.
 ONRR is preparing regulations governing collection of delinquent 
            royalties, rentals, bonuses, and other amounts due under 
            Federal and Indian oil, gas, and other mineral leases. The 
            regulations would include provisions for administrative 
            offset and would clarify and codify the provisions of the 
            Debt Collection Act of 1982 and the Debt Collection 
            Improvement Act of 1996.
 Continue to meet Indian trust responsibilities.
 ONRR has a trust responsibility to accurately collect and disburse oil 
            and gas royalties on Indian lands. ONRR will increase 
            royalty certainty by addressing oil valuation for Indian 
            lands through a rulemaking process involving key 
            stakeholders.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) is to work with 
others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, and plants and 
their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. FWS 
also helps ensure a healthy environment for people by providing 
opportunities for Americans to enjoy the outdoors and our shared 
natural heritage.
FWS fulfills its responsibilities through a diverse array of programs 
that:
 Protect and recover threatened and endangered species;
 Monitor and manage migratory birds;
 Restore native aquatic populations and nationally significant 
            fisheries;
 Enforce Federal wildlife laws and regulate international 
            trade;
 Conserve and restore wildlife habitat such as wetlands;
 Help foreign governments conserve wildlife through 
            international conservation efforts;
 Distribute Federal funds to States, territories, and tribes 
            for fish and wildlife conservation projects; and
 Manage the 96-million-acre National Wildlife Refuge System, 
            which protects and conserves fish and wildlife and their 
            habitats and allows the public to engage in outdoor 
            recreational activities.
Critical challenges to the work of FWS include global climate change; 
shortages of clean water suitable for wildlife; invasive species that 
are harmful to our fish, wildlife, and plant resources and their 
habitats; and the alienation of children and adults from the natural 
world. To address these challenges, FWS has identified six priorities:
 The National Wildlife Refuge System--conserving our lands and 
            resources;
 Landscape conservation--working with others;

[[Page 79582]]

 Migratory birds--conservation and management;
 Threatened and endangered species--achieving recovery and 
            preventing extinction;
 Connecting people with nature--ensuring the future of 
            conservation; and
 Aquatic species--the National Fish Habitat Action Plan (a plan 
            that brings public and private partners together to restore 
            U.S. waterways to sustainable health).
To carry out these priorities, FWS has a large regulatory agenda that 
will, among other things:
 List, delist, and reclassify species on the Lists of 
            Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants and designate 
            critical habitat for certain listed species;
 Update our regulations to carry out the Convention on 
            International Trade in Wild Fauna and Flora;
 Manage migratory bird populations;
 Administer the subsistence program for harvest of fish and 
            wildlife in Alaska;
 Update our regulations governing the Wildlife and Sport Fish 
            Restoration Program; and
 Set forth hunting and sport fishing regulations for the 
            National Wildlife Refuge System.
National Park Service
In November 2006, the National Park Service completed a nearly 10-year 
public process to develop a management plan for the Colorado River in 
Grand Canyon National Park. The Service is now implementing the plan by 
developing regulations that: Implement permit requirements for 
commercial river trips below a specified location in the canyon; update 
visitor use restrictions and camping closures; and eliminate 
unnecessary provisions in the current regulation. The proposed rule was 
published in the Federal Register on July13, 2009, and the public 
comment period ended on September 11, 2009. The Service hopes to 
complete and publish a final rule by the end of 2010.
The National Park Service is working with the Bureau of Land Management 
and the Fish and Wildlife Service to finalize rules implementing Public 
Law 106-206, which directs the Secretary to establish a reasonable fee 
system (location fees) for commercial filming and still photography 
activities on public lands. Although commercial filming and still 
photography are generally allowed on Federal lands, it is in the 
public's interest to manage these activities through a permitting 
process. This will minimize the possibility of damage to the cultural 
or natural resources or interference with other visitors to the area. 
This regulation would standardize the collection of location fees by 
DOI agencies.
Bureau of Reclamation
The Bureau of Reclamation's mission is to manage, develop, and protect 
water and related resources in an environmentally and economically 
sound manner in the interest of the American public. To accomplish this 
mission, we employ management, engineering, and science to achieve 
effective and environmentally sensitive solutions.
Reclamation projects provide: Irrigation water service, municipal and 
industrial water supply, hydroelectric power generation, water quality 
improvement, groundwater management, fish and wildlife enhancement, 
outdoor recreation, flood control, navigation, river regulation and 
control, system optimization, and related uses. We have continued to 
focus on increased security at our facilities.
Our regulatory program focus in fiscal year 2011 is to ensure that our 
mission and laws that require regulatory actions are carried out 
expeditiously, efficiently, and with an emphasis on cooperative problem 
solving by implementing two newly authorized programs:
 Title I of Public Law 109-451 authorizes establishment of a 
            rural water supply program to enable the Bureau of 
            Reclamation to coordinate with rural communities throughout 
            the Western United States to identify their potable water 
            supply needs and evaluate options for meeting those needs. 
            Under the Act, we are finalizing a rule that will define 
            how we will identify and work with eligible rural 
            communities. We published an interim final rule on November 
            17, 2008, and expect to publish a final rule in 2011.
 Title II of Public Law 109-451 authorizes the Secretary of the 
            Interior, through the Bureau of Reclamation, to issue loan 
            guarantees to assist in financing: (a) rural water supply 
            projects, (b) extraordinary maintenance and rehabilitation 
            of Reclamation project facilities, and (c) improvements to 
            infrastructure directly related to Reclamation projects. 
            This new program will provide an additional funding option 
            to help western communities and water managers to cost 
            effectively meet their water supply and maintenance needs. 
            Under the Act, we are working with the Office of Management 
            and Budget to publish a rule that will establish criteria 
            for administering the loan guarantee program. We published 
            a proposed rule on October 6, 2008, and expect to publish a 
            final rule in 2011.
BILLING CODE 4310-RK-S

[[Page 79583]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (DOJ)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
The Department of Justice's highest priority is to protect America 
against acts of terrorism, both foreign and domestic, within the letter 
and spirit of the Constitution. While vigorously pursuing the fight 
against terrorism, the Department is also reinvigorating its 
traditional missions by embracing its historic role in fighting crime, 
protecting civil rights, preserving the environment, and ensuring 
fairness in the market place. The Department is working to achieve the 
fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans, to 
assist its State and local partners, and to defend the Nation's 
interests according to the law. In addition to using investigative, 
prosecutorial, and other law enforcement activities, the Department is 
also using the regulatory process to better carry out the Department's 
wide-ranging law enforcement missions.
The Department of Justice's key regulatory priorities include 
regulatory initiatives in the area of civil rights, criminal justice, 
and immigration. These are summarized below. However, in addition to 
these initiatives, several other components of the Department carry out 
important responsibilities through the regulatory process. Although 
their regulatory efforts are not separately discussed in this overview 
of the regulatory priorities, those components have key roles in 
implementing the Department's anti-terrorism and law enforcement 
priorities.
Civil Rights
In September 2010, the Department published its final rules amending 
its regulations implementing title II of the Americans with 
Disabilities Act (ADA), which prohibits discrimination by public 
entities, and title III of the ADA, which prohibits discrimination by 
public accommodations and certain testing entities and requires 
commercial facilities to be constructed or altered in compliance with 
the ADA accessibility standards. These key regulations adopt revised 
ADA Standards for Accessible Design and address certain key policy 
issues. During the course of this rulemaking project, the Department 
became aware of the need to provide guidance on four additional subject 
matter areas--use of accessible web sites, movie captions and video 
descriptions, the accessibility of emergency call centers (Next 
Generation 9-1-1), and accessible equipment and furniture. On July 26, 
2010, the Department published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking 
(ANPRM) for each of these subject areas. These rules will be the focus 
of the Civil Rights Division's regulatory activities for FY 2011. The 
Department also plans to propose amendments to its ADA regulations to 
implement the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, which took effect on January 
1, 2009.
The four ANPRMs published on July 26, 2010, include:
NG 9-1-1. This ANPRM seeks information on possible revisions to the 
Department's regulation to ensure direct access to NG 9-1-1 services 
for individuals with disabilities. In 1991, the Department of Justice 
published a regulation to implement title II of the Americans with 
Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA). That regulation requires public safety 
answering points (PSAPs) to provide direct access to persons with 
disabilities who use analog telecommunication devices for the deaf 
(TTYs) 28 CFR 35.162. Since that rule was published, there have been 
major changes in the types of communications technology used by the 
general public and by people who have disabilities that affect their 
hearing or speech. Many individuals with disabilities now use the 
Internet and wireless text devices as their primary modes of 
telecommunications. At the same time, PSAPs are planning to shift from 
analog telecommunications technology to new Internet-Protocol (IP)-
enabled Next Generation 9-1-1 services (NG 9-1-1) that will provide 
voice and data (such as text, pictures, and video) capabilities. As 
PSAPs transition from the analog systems to the new technologies, it is 
essential that their plans ensure that people with communication 
disabilities will be able to use the new systems. Therefore, the 
Department published this ANPRM to begin to develop appropriate 
guidance for PSAPs that are making this transition.
Movie captioning and video description. Title III of the ADA requires 
public accommodations to take ``such steps as may be necessary to 
ensure that no individual with a disability is treated differently 
because of the absence of auxiliary aids and services, unless the 
covered entity can demonstrate that taking such steps would cause a 
fundamental alteration or would result in an undue burden.'' 42 U.S.C. 
section 12182(b)(2)(A)(iii). Both open and closed captioning and audio 
recordings are examples of auxiliary aids and services that should be 
provided by places of public accommodations, 28 CFR section 
36.303(b)(1)-(2). The Department stated in the preamble to its 1991 
rule that ``[m]ovie theaters are not required * * * to present open-
captioned films,'' 28 CFR part 36, app. B, but it was silent regarding 
closed captioning and video description in movie theaters.
Since 1991, there have been many technological advances in the area of 
closed captioning and video description for first-run movies. In June 
2008, the Department issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to 
revise the ADA title III regulation, 73 FR 34466, in which the 
Department stated that it was considering options for requiring that 
movie theater owners or operators exhibit movies that are captioned or 
that provide video (narrative) description. The Department received 
numerous comments urging the Department to issue captioning and video 
description regulations. The Department is persuaded that such 
regulations are appropriate. However, the Department decided to issue 
an ANPRM to obtain more information regarding issues raised by 
commenters; to seek comment on technical questions that arose from the 
Department's research; and to learn more about the status of digital 
conversion. In addition, the Department sought information regarding 
whether other technologies or areas of interest (e.g., 3D) have 
developed or are in the process of development that either would 
replace or augment digital cinema or make any regulatory requirements 
for captioning and video description more difficult or expensive to 
implement. Responses to these questions will inform the Department's 
decisions about the scope of a proposed rule.
Web Site Accessibility. The Internet as it is known today did not exist 
when Congress enacted the ADA, yet today the World Wide Web plays a 
critical role in the daily personal, professional, civic, and business 
life of Americans. The ADA's expansive nondiscrimination mandate 
reaches goods and services provided by public accommodations and public 
entities using Internet websites. Being unable to access websites puts 
individuals at a great disadvantage in today's society, which is driven 
by a dynamic electronic marketplace and unprecedented access to 
information. On the economic front, electronic commerce, or ``e-
commerce,'' often offers consumers a wider selection and lower prices 
than traditional, ``brick-and-mortar'' storefronts, with the added 
convenience of not having to leave one's home to obtain goods and 
services. For individuals with

[[Page 79584]]

disabilities who experience barriers to their ability to travel or to 
leave their homes, the Internet may be their only way to access certain 
goods and services. Beyond goods and services, information available on 
the Internet has become a gateway to education, socializing, and 
entertainment.
The Internet is also dramatically changing the way that governmental 
entities serve the public. Public entities are increasingly providing 
their constituents access to government services and programs through 
their websites. Through government websites, the public can obtain 
information or correspond with local officials without having to wait 
in line or be placed on hold. They can also pay fines, apply for 
benefits, renew State-issued identification, register to vote, file 
taxes, request copies of vital records, and complete numerous other 
everyday tasks. The availability of these services and information 
online not only makes life easier for the public, but also enables 
governmental entities to operate more efficiently and at a lower cost.
The ADA's promise to provide an equal opportunity for individuals with 
disabilities to participate in and benefit from all aspects of American 
civic and economic life will be achieved in today's technologically 
advanced society only if it is clear to State and local governments, 
businesses, educators, and other public accommodations that their 
websites must be accessible. Consequently, the Department is 
considering amending its regulations implementing title II and title 
III of the ADA to require public entities and public accommodations 
that provide products or services to the public through Internet 
websites make their sites accessible to and usable by individuals with 
disabilities.
Equipment and Furniture. Both title II and title III of the ADA require 
covered entities to make reasonable modifications in their programs or 
services to facilitate participation by persons with disabilities. In 
addition, covered entities are required to ensure that people are not 
excluded from participation because facilities are inaccessible or 
because the entity has failed to provide auxiliary aids. The use of 
accessible equipment and furniture is often critical to an entity's 
ability to provide a person with a disability equal access to its 
services. Changes in technology have resulted in the development and 
improved availability of accessible equipment and furniture that 
benefit individuals with disabilities. Consequently, it is easier now 
to specify appropriate accessibility standards for such equipment and 
furniture, as the 2010 ADA Standards will do for several types of fixed 
equipment and furniture, including ATMs, washing machines, dryers, 
tables, benches, and vending machines. To the extent that ADA standards 
apply requirements for fixed equipment and furniture, the Department 
will look to those standards for guidance on accessibility standards 
for equipment and furniture that are not fixed. The ANPRM seeks 
information about other categories of equipment--particularly medical 
equipment and exercise equipment. The public is invited to suggest 
other types of equipment that should be addressed.
Prison Rape Elimination
Pursuant to the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA or the 
``Act''), the Department is drafting regulations to adopt national 
standards for the detection, reduction, and punishment of prison rape. 
PREA established the National Prison Rape Elimination Commission for 
the purpose of studying prison rape. The Commission issued a report 
that provided recommended national standards for reducing prison rape, 
which in turn, are to be reviewed by the Justice Department. 
Specifically, PREA mandates that national standards issued pursuant to 
PREA ``shall be based upon the independent judgment of the Attorney 
General, after giving due consideration to the recommended national 
standards provided by the Commission... and being informed by such 
data, opinions, and proposals that the Attorney General determines to 
be appropriate to consider.'' The Act further provides that the 
Department ``shall not establish a national standard... that would 
impose substantial additional costs compared to the costs presently 
expended by Federal, State, and local prison authorities.''
The Department is reviewing the Commission's recommendations and is 
drafting proposed regulations. In addition, the Department is reviewing 
a study by an independent contractor commissioned by the Department's 
Office of Justice Programs to analyze the costs of the Commission's 
proposed recommendations. The Department is also reviewing extensive 
public comments on the Commission's proposed recommendations pursuant 
to an ANPRM that the Department issued while awaiting the completion of 
the cost analysis.
Federal Habeas Corpus Review Procedures in Capital Cases
Pursuant to the USA PATRIOT Improvement and Reauthorization Act of 
2005, on December 11, 2008, the Department promulgated a final rule to 
implement certification procedures for States seeking to qualify for 
the expedited Federal habeas corpus review procedures in capital cases 
under chapter 154 of title 28 of the United States Code. On February 5, 
2009, the Department published in the Federal Register a notice 
soliciting further public comment on all aspects of the December 2008 
final rule. As the Department reviewed the comments submitted in 
response to the February 2009 notice, it considered further the 
statutory requirements governing the regulatory implementation of the 
chapter 154 certification procedures. The Attorney General has 
determined that chapter 154 reasonably could be construed to allow the 
Attorney General greater discretion in making certification 
determinations than the December 2008 regulations allowed. Accordingly, 
a new rulemaking, and the removal of the entire December 2008 final 
rule, is warranted in order to articulate the standards the Attorney 
General will apply in making chapter 154 certification decisions and to 
obtain public input concerning the formulation of such standards. As 
the first step of this process, the Department published a notice in 
the Federal Register on May 25, 2010, proposing to remove the December 
2008 regulations pending the completion of a new rulemaking process. 
The May 2010 rule will be finalized by a final rule to be published in 
the fall of 2010. The next step in the process will be the publication 
of a new proposed rule proposing new chapter 154 certification 
standards and seeking public input concerning the formulation of such 
standards.
Criminal Law Enforcement
For the most part, the Department's criminal law enforcement components 
do not rely on the rulemaking process to carry out their assigned 
missions. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), for example, is 
responsible for protecting and defending the United States against 
terrorist and foreign intelligence threats, upholding and enforcing the 
criminal laws of the United States, and providing leadership and 
criminal justice services to Federal, State, municipal, and 
international agencies and partners. Only in very limited contexts does 
the FBI rely on rulemaking. For example, the FBI is currently updating 
its National Instant

[[Page 79585]]

Criminal Background Check System regulations to allow criminal justice 
agencies to conduct background checks prior to the return of firearms.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) issues 
regulations to enforce the Federal laws relating to the manufacture and 
commerce of firearms and explosives. ATF's mission and regulations are 
designed to:
 Curb illegal traffic in, and criminal use of, firearms, and to 
            assist State, local, and other Federal law enforcement 
            agencies in reducing crime and violence;
 Facilitate investigations of violations of Federal explosives 
            laws and arson-for-profit schemes;
 Regulate the firearms and explosives industries, including 
            systems for licenses and permits;
 Assure the collection of all National Firearms Act (NFA) 
            firearms taxes and obtain a high level of voluntary 
            compliance with all laws governing the firearms industry; 
            and
 Assist the States in their efforts to eliminate interstate 
            trafficking in, and the sale and distribution of, 
            cigarettes and alcohol in avoidance of Federal and State 
            taxes.
ATF will continue, as a priority during fiscal year 2011, to seek 
modifications to its regulations governing commerce in firearms and 
explosives. ATF plans to issue final regulations implementing the 
provisions of the Safe Explosives Act, title XI, subtitle C, of Public 
Law 107-296, the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (enacted Nov. 25, 2002).
Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled Substances. Combating the 
proliferation of methamphetamine and preventing the diversion of 
prescription drugs for illicit purposes are among the Attorney 
General's top drug enforcement priorities. The Drug Enforcement 
Administration (DEA) is responsible for enforcing the Controlled 
Substances Act and its implementing regulations to prevent the 
diversion of controlled substances, while ensuring adequate supplies 
for legitimate medical, scientific, and industrial purposes. DEA 
accomplishes its objectives through coordination with State, local, and 
other Federal officials in drug enforcement activities, development and 
maintenance of drug intelligence systems, regulation of legitimate 
controlled substances, and enforcement coordination and intelligence-
gathering activities with foreign government agencies. DEA continues to 
develop and enhance regulatory controls relating to the diversion 
control requirements for controlled substances.
One of DEA's key regulatory initiatives is its Interim Final Rule with 
Request for Comment ``Electronic Prescriptions for Controlled 
Substances'' [RIN 1117-AA61]. This regulation provides practitioners 
with the option of writing prescriptions for controlled substances 
electronically and permits pharmacies to receive, dispense, and archive 
electronic prescriptions for controlled substances. This regulation 
provides pharmacies, hospitals, and practitioners with the ability to 
use modern technology for controlled substance prescriptions while 
maintaining the closed system of controls on controlled substances.
Bureau of Prisons Initiatives. The Federal Bureau of Prisons issues 
regulations to enforce the Federal laws relating to its mission: To 
protect society by confining offenders in the controlled environments 
of prisons and community-based facilities that are safe, humane, cost-
efficient, and appropriately secure, and that provide work and other 
self-improvement opportunities to assist offenders in becoming law-
abiding citizens. During the next 12 months, in addition to other 
regulatory objectives aimed at accomplishing its mission, the Bureau 
will continue its ongoing efforts to: Streamline regulations, 
eliminating unnecessary language and improving readability; improve 
disciplinary procedures through a revision of the subpart relating to 
the disciplinary process; reduce the introduction of contraband through 
various means, such as clarifying drug and alcohol surveillance testing 
programs; protect the public from continuing criminal activity 
committed within prison; and enhance the Bureau's ability to more 
closely monitor the communications of high-risk inmates.
Immigration Matters
On March 1, 2003, pursuant to the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (HSA), 
the responsibility for immigration enforcement and for providing 
immigration-related services and benefits such as naturalization and 
work authorization was transferred from the Justice Department's 
Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) to the Department of 
Homeland Security (DHS). However, the immigration judges and the Board 
of Immigration Appeals in the Executive Office for Immigration Review 
(EOIR)) remain part of the Department of Justice. The immigration 
judges adjudicate approximately 300,000 cases each year to determine 
whether the aliens should be ordered removed or should be granted some 
form of relief from removal, and the Board has jurisdiction over 
appeals from those decisions, as well as other matters. Accordingly, 
the Attorney General has a continuing role in the conduct of removal 
hearings, the granting of relief from removal, and the detention or 
release of aliens pending completion of removal proceedings. The 
Attorney General also is responsible for civil litigation and criminal 
prosecutions relating to the immigration laws.
In several pending rulemaking actions, the Department is working to 
revise and update the regulations relating to removal proceedings in 
order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the hearings in 
resolving issues relating to removal of aliens and the granting of 
relief from removal.
On June 3, 2009, the Attorney General announced his intention to 
initiate a new rulemaking proceeding for regulations to govern claims 
of ineffective assistance of counsel in immigration proceedings. The 
Department is currently drafting regulations to further this goal. The 
Department is also drafting regulations pursuant to the William 
Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act of 2008 
to take into account the specialized needs of unaccompanied alien 
children in removal proceedings.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOJ--Legal Activities (LA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

93. NATIONAL STANDARDS TO PREVENT, DETECT, AND RESPOND TO PRISON RAPE

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


5 USC 301; 28 USC 509; 28 USC 510; 42 USC 15601


CFR Citation:


28 CFR 115


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, June 23, 2010.

[[Page 79586]]

Abstract:


The Department of Justice has under review national standards for 
enhancing the prevention, detection, and response to sexual abuse in 
confinement settings that were prepared by the National Commission on 
Prison Rape Elimination pursuant to the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 
2003 (PREA) and recommended by the Commission to the Attorney General. 
Through an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM), the 
Department received public input on the Commission's proposed national 
standards and information useful to the Department in publishing a 
final rule adopting national standards for the detection, prevention, 
reduction and punishment of prison rape, as mandated by PREA.


Statement of Need:


Rape is violent, destructive, and a crime--no less so when the victim 
is incarcerated. Tolerance of sexual abuse of prisoners in the 
government's custody is incompatible with American values. Congress 
affirmed the duty to protect incarcerated individuals from sexual abuse 
by enacting the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA), 42 U.S.C. 
section 15601 et seq.


Summary of Legal Basis:


PREA requires the Attorney General to promulgate regulations that adopt 
national standards for the detection, prevention, and punishment of 
prison rape. PREA established the Commission to carry out a 
comprehensive legal and factual study of a penological, physical, 
mental, medical, social, and economic impacts of prison rape in the 
United States, and to recommend to the Attorney General national 
standard for the detection, prevention, reduction and punishment of 
prison rape. The Commission released its recommended national standards 
in a report dated June 23, 2009. Pursuant to PREA the final rule 
adopting national standards ``shall be based upon the independent 
judgment of the Attorney General, after giving due consideration to the 
recommended national standards provided by the Commission. . .and being 
informed by such data, opinions, and proposals that the Attorney 
General determines to be appropriate to consider.'' 42 U.S.C. section 
24607(a)(2). PREA expressly mandates that the Department shall not 
establish a national standard ``that would impose substantial 
additional costs compared to the costs presently expended by the 
Federal, State, and local prison authorities.'' 42 U.S.C. section 
24607(a)(3).


Alternatives:


Given the specific direction of Congress, the Department is obligated 
to issue a rule that promulgates regulations establishing national 
standards to combat prison rape. As discussed in the rule and in the 
Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA) the Department has received input from 
numerous stakeholders concerning the development of these regulations 
and, as part of the development process, considered a wide range of 
proposals in developing the content of such standards.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


In directing the Attorney General to promulgate national standards for 
enhancing the prevention, detection, reduction, and punishment of 
prison rape. Congress understood that such standards were likely to 
require federal, state, and local agencies (as well as private 
entities) that operate inmate confinement facilities to incur costs in 
implementing and complying with those standards. Given the statue's 
aspiration to ``eliminate'' prison rape in the United states, Congress 
recognized that costs would need to be expended. Indeed, the statute's 
findings (42 U.S.C. section 15601) suggest an assessment by Congress 
that the benefits to society of eliminating prison rape are likely to 
outweigh any anticipated costs of achieving that goal.


The Department's full discussion of the anticipated costs and benefits 
of this rule is included in the rule's Initial Regulatory Impact 
Assessment.


Risks:


These regulations are intended to carry out the intent of Congress to 
eliminate prison rape. The risks from the failure to promulgate these 
regulations are primarily that inmates in Federal, State, and local 
facilities would be at higher risk of sexual assault than they would be 
if these regulations are promulgated.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           03/10/10                    75 FR 11077
ANPRM Comment Period End        05/10/10
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Robert Hinchman
Senior Counsel, Office of Legal Policy
Department of Justice
Room 4252
950 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20530
Phone: 202 514-8059
Fax: 202 353-2371
Email: robert.hinchman@usdoj.gov
RIN: 1105-AB34
BILLING CODE 4410-BP-S

[[Page 79587]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR (DOL)

<###DOC>

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Fall 2010 Statement of Regulatory Priorities
Secretary Solis has consistently stated that all of the work of the 
Department of Labor is focused on achieving Good Jobs for Everyone. The 
Labor Department's vision of a ``good job'' includes jobs that:
 increase workers' incomes and narrow wage and income 
inequality;
 assure workers are paid their wages and overtime;
 increase workers' incomes and narrow wage and income 
inequality;
 assure workers are paid their wages and overtime;
 are in safe and healthy workplaces, and fair and diverse 
workplaces;
 provide workplace flexibility for family and personal care-
giving;
 improve health benefits and retirement security for all 
workers; and
 assure workers have a voice in the workplace.
To achieve this goal, the Department is using every tool in its 
toolbox, including increased enforcement actions, increased education 
and outreach, and targeted regulatory actions. Because the Department 
cannot be in every workplace every day, our targeted regulatory actions 
are centered on two broad themes--Plan/Prevent/Protect, and Openness 
and Transparency. These unifying themes seek to foster a new calculus 
that strengthens protections for workers and results in significantly 
increased compliance. Employers and other regulated entities must take 
full ownership over their adherence to Department regulations. The 
Department also hopes that with greater openness and transparency, 
workers will be in a better position to judge whether their workplace 
is one that values health and safety, work-life balance, and diversity.
Plan/Prevent/Protect Compliance Strategy
In the fall 2010 regulatory agenda, the Occupational Safety and Health 
Administration (OSHA), Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), 
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP), and the Wage 
and Hour Division (WHD) will all propose regulatory actions that would 
require employers to develop programs to address specific compliance 
issues within each agency's portfolio. Although the specifics will vary 
by law, industry, and regulated enterprise, the Plan/Prevent/Protect 
strategy seeks to remind employers and other regulated entities that 
they are responsible for full compliance with the law every day, not 
just when Department inspectors come calling. As announced with the 
spring 2010 regulatory agenda, the strategy will require employers and 
other regulated entities to:
 ``Plan'': Create a plan for identifying and remediating risks 
of legal violations and other risks to workers--for example, a plan to 
inspect their workplaces for safety hazards that might injure or kill 
workers. Workers will be given opportunities to participate in the 
creation of the plans. In addition, the plans would be made available 
to workers so they can fully understand them and help to monitor their 
implementation.
 ``Prevent'': Thoroughly and completely implement the plan in a 
manner that prevents legal violations. The plan cannot be a mere paper 
process. This will not be an exercise in drafting a plan only to put it 
on a shelf. The plan must be fully implemented.
 ``Protect'': Verify on a regular basis that the plan's 
objectives are being met. The plan must actually protect workers from 
health and safety risks and other violations of their workplace rights.
Employers and other regulated entities who fail to take these steps to 
comprehensively address the risks, hazards, and inequities in their 
workplaces will be considered out of compliance with the law and, 
depending upon the agency and the substantive law it is enforcing, 
subject to remedial action. But employers, unions, and others who 
follow the Department's Plan/Prevent/Protect strategy will assure 
compliance with employment laws before Labor Department enforcement 
personnel arrive at their doorsteps. Most important, they will assure 
that workers get the safe, healthy, diverse, family-friendly, and fair 
workplaces they deserve.
Openness and Transparency: Tools for Achieving Compliance
Greater openness and transparency continues to be central to the 
Department's compliance and regulatory strategies. The fall 2010 
regulatory plan demonstrates the Department's continued commitment to 
conducting the people's business with openness and transparency, not 
only as good government and stakeholder engagement strategies, but as 
important means to achieve compliance with the employment laws 
administered and enforced by the Department. Openness and transparency 
will not only enhance agencies' enforcement actions but will encourage 
greater levels of compliance by the regulated community and enhance 
awareness among workers of their rights and benefits. When employers, 
unions, workers, advocates, and members of the public have greater 
access to information concerning workplace conditions and expectations, 
then we all become partners in the endeavor to create Good Jobs for 
Everyone.
Worker Protection Responsiveness
The Department believes Plan/Prevent/Protect and increased Openness and 
Transparency will result in gradual improvements to worker health and 
safety. However, when the Department identifies specific hazards and 
risks to worker health, safety, security or fairness, we will utilize 
our regulatory powers to limit the risk to workers. The fall 2010 
regulatory plan includes examples of such regulatory initiatives to 
address such specific concerns.
MSHA is planning several regulatory initiatives to respond to specific 
health and safety needs of workers: (1) MSHA plans to issue an 
emergency temporary standard (ETS) covering the Maintenance of 
Incombustible Content of Rock Dust in Underground Coal Mines, (2) MSHA 
advanced the publication date for the proposed rule covering 
Examinations of Work Areas in Underground Coal Mines from March 2011 to 
October 2010, and (3) MSHA decided not to publish a request for 
information on Safety and Health Management Programs for Mines and is 
instead planning to hold a series of public meetings in October 2010 
followed by the publication of a proposed rule in June 2011.
OSHA plans to issue a proposed rule that will update fatality and 
catastrophe reporting requirements so the Agency receives more timely 
information on a broader range of catastrophic events, which will help 
OSHA conduct more responsive investigations.
Crystalline silica exposure is one of the most serious hazards workers 
face. OSHA and MSHA are both proposing to address worker exposures to 
crystalline silica through the promulgation and enforcement of a 
comprehensive health standard.

[[Page 79588]]

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)
OSHA's regulatory program is designed to help workers and employers 
identify hazards in the workplace, prevent the occurrence of injuries 
and adverse health effects, and communicate with the regulated 
community regarding hazards and how to effectively control them. Long-
recognized health hazards such as silica, beryllium, and emerging 
hazards such as food flavorings containing diacetyl place American 
workers at risk of serious disease and death and are initiatives on 
OSHA's regulatory agenda. In addition to targeting specific hazards, 
OSHA is focusing on systematic processes that will modernize the 
culture of safety in America's workplaces.
Plan/Prevent/Protect
Infectious Diseases
OSHA is considering the need for regulatory action to address the risk 
to workers exposed to infectious diseases in healthcare and other 
related high-risk environments. The Agency is considering an approach 
that would combine elements of the Department's Plan/Prevent/Protect 
strategy with established infection control practices. The Agency 
received strong stakeholder participation in response to its May 2010 
request for information on infectious diseases and is currently 
reviewing the docket.
In 2007, the healthcare and social assistance sector as a whole had 
16.5 million employees. Healthcare workplaces can range from small, 
private practices of physicians to hospitals that employ thousands of 
workers. In addition, healthcare is increasingly being provided in 
other settings such as nursing homes, free-standing surgical and 
outpatient centers, emergency care clinics, patients' homes, and pre-
hospitalization emergency care settings. OSHA is interested in all 
routes of infectious disease transmission in healthcare settings not 
already covered by its bloodborne pathogens standard (e.g., contact, 
droplet, and airborne). The Agency is particularly concerned by studies 
that indicate that transmission of infectious diseases to both patients 
and healthcare workers may be occurring as a result of incomplete 
adherence to recognized, but voluntary, infection control measures. 
Another concern is the movement of healthcare delivery from the 
traditional hospital setting, with its greater infrastructure and 
resources to effectively implement infection control measures, into 
more diverse and smaller workplace setting with less infrastructure and 
fewer resources, but with an expanding worker population.
Injury and illness Prevention Program (12P2)
OSHA's I2P2 program is the prototype for the Department's Plan/Prevent/
Protect strategy. OSHA's first step in this important rulemaking was to 
hold stakeholder meetings. Stakeholder meetings were held in East 
Brunswick, NJ; Dallas, Texas; Washington, DC; and Sacramento, 
California, beginning in June 2010 and ending in August 2010. More than 
200 stakeholders participated in these meetings, and in addition, 
nearly 300 stakeholders attended as observers. The proposed rule will 
explore requiring employers to provide their employees with 
opportunities to participate in the development and implementation of 
an injury and illness prevention program, including a systematic 
process to proactively and continuously address workplace safety and 
health hazards. This rule will involve planning, implementing, 
evaluating, and improving processes and activities that promote worker 
safety and health, and address the needs of special categories of 
workers (such as youth, aging, and immigrant workers). OSHA's efforts 
to protect workers under the age of 18 will be undertaken in 
cooperation with the Department's Wage and Hour Division, which has 
responsibility for enforcing the child labor provisions of the Fair 
Labor Standards Act. OSHA has substantial evidence showing that 
employers that have implemented similar injury and illness prevention 
programs have significantly reduced injuries and illnesses in their 
workplaces. The new rule would build on OSHA's existing Safety and 
Health Program Management Guidelines and lessons learned from 
successful approaches and best practices that have been applied by 
companies participating in OSHA's Voluntary Protection Program and 
Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program, and similar industry 
and international initiatives.
Addressing Targeted Hazards
Silica
In order to target one of the most serious hazards workers face, OSHA 
is proposing to address worker exposures to crystalline silica through 
the promulgation and enforcement of a comprehensive health standard. 
Exposure to silica causes silicosis, a debilitating respiratory 
disease, and may cause cancer, other chronic respiratory diseases, and 
renal and autoimmune disease as well. Over 2 million workers are 
exposed to crystalline silica in general industry, construction, and 
maritime industries and workers are often exposed to levels that exceed 
current OSHA permissible limits, especially in the construction 
industry where workers are exposed at levels that exceed current limits 
by several fold. It has been estimated that between 3,500 and 7,000 new 
cases of silicosis arise each year in the U.S., and that 1,746 workers 
died of silicosis between 1996 and 2005. Reducing these hazardous 
exposures through promulgation and enforcement of a comprehensive 
health standard will contribute to OSHA's goal of reducing occupational 
fatalities and illnesses. As a part of the Secretary's strategy for 
securing safe and healthy workplaces, MSHA will also utilize 
information provided by OSHA to undertake regulatory action related to 
silica exposure in mines.
Backing Operations
In order to target one of most serious hazards that construction 
workers face, OSHA is proposing to address worker exposures to the 
dangers inherent in backing operations through the promulgation and 
enforcement of a revised construction standard. NIOSH reports that half 
of the fatalities involving construction equipment occur while the 
equipment is backing. Backing accidents cause 500 deaths and 15,000 
injuries per year. Emerging technologies in the field of backing 
operations include after market devices, such as camera, radar, and 
sonar, to help monitor the presence of workers on foot in blind areas, 
and new monitoring technology, such as tag-based warning systems that 
use radio frequency (RFID) and magnetic field generators on equipment 
to detect electronic tags worn by workers. OSHA is developing this 
proposal in consultation with MSHA, which will issue an Emergency 
Temporary Standard concerning Proximity Detection.
Openness and Transparency
Hazard Communication
Hearings on OSHA's proposal to modify its Hazard Communication standard 
have helped the agency to promote transparency in the communication of 
chemical hazard information. These hearings gathered information to 
assist OSHA in creating consistency between its current Hazard 
Communication standard (HCS) and the United Nations' Globally 
Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). 
This rulemaking

[[Page 79589]]

involves changing the criteria for classifying health and physical 
hazards to require information regarding the severity of the hazard, a 
standardized order of information for safety data sheets, and adopting 
standardized labeling requirements that would be understandable for 
low-literacy workers or those who do not speak English. The HCS covers 
over 945,000 hazardous chemical products in 7 million American 
workplaces and gives workers the ``right to know'' about chemical 
hazards to which they are exposed. OSHA and other Federal agencies have 
participated in long-term international negotiations to develop the 
GHS. Revising the HCS to be consistent with the GHS is expected to 
significantly improve the communication of hazards to workers in 
American workplaces, reducing exposures to hazardous chemicals, and 
reducing occupational illnesses and fatalities.
Modernizing Recordkeeping
In the first half of this year, OSHA held informal meetings to gather 
information from experts and stakeholders regarding the modification of 
its current injury and illness data collection system that will help 
the agency, employers, employees, researchers, and the public prevent 
workplace injuries and illnesses, as well as support President Obama's 
Open Government Initiative. Under the proposed rule, OSFIA will explore 
increasing its legal authority to require employers to electronically 
submit to the Agency any data required by part 1904 (Recording and 
Reporting Occupational Injuries). In addition it will set ongoing 
electronic submission requirements of data for a defined set of 
establishments. This two-part rule will give OSHA the flexibility to 
define the scope and frequency of data collection without having to 
undertake additional rulemakings. With OMB approval, OSHA will be able 
to conduct data collections ranging from the annual collection of data 
from a handful of employers to the real-time collection of all part 
1904 data from all covered employers. In addition, OSHA will be able to 
request additional data elements that employers are not required to 
maintain, such as data on race and ethnicity, as a non-mandatory 
component of a given data collection. OSHA learned from stakeholders 
that most large employers already maintain their part 1904 data 
electronically; as a result, electronic submission will constitute a 
minimal burden on these employers, while providing a wealth of data to 
help OSHA, employers, employees, researchers, and the public prevent 
workplace injuries and illnesses.
Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)
The Mine Safety and Health Administration is the worker protection 
agency focused on the prevention of death, disease, and injury from 
mining and the promotion of safe and healthful workplaces for the 
Nation's miners. The Department believes that every worker has a right 
to a safe and healthy workplace. Workers should never have to sacrifice 
their lives for their livelihood, and all workers deserve to come home 
to their families at the end of their shift safe and whole. MSHA's 
approach to reducing workplace fatalities and injuries includes 
promulgating and enforcing mandatory health and safety standards.
Plan/Prevent/Protect
Safety and Health Management Programs for Mines
Year after year, many mines experience low injury and illness rates and 
low violation rates. For these mine operators, preventing harm to their 
miners is more than compliance with safety and health requirements; it 
reflects the embodiment of a culture of safety--from the CEO to the 
miner. This culture of safety derives from a commitment to an 
effective, comprehensive safety and health management program. Since 
compliance with safety and health standards is the responsibility of 
mine operators, MSHA plans to publish a proposed rule to require mine 
operators to develop comprehensive Safety and Health Management 
Programs for Mines. MSHA believes that operators with effective safety 
and health management programs would identify and correct hazards in a 
more timely manner, resulting in fewer accidents, injuries and 
illnesses. To help develop the proposal, MSHA held public meetings and 
gathered information from worker organizations, industry, academia, 
government, and safety and health professionals about model safety and 
health programs.
Examinations of Work Areas in Underground Coal Mines for Violations of 
Mandatory Health or Safety Standards
To complement the safety and health management programs proposed rule, 
MSHA also plans to issue a proposed rule to address section 303(d) of 
the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act that requires mine operators to 
conduct examinations, in areas where miners work or travel, for 
violations of mandatory health or safety standards. The proposal would 
assure that underground coal mine operators find and fix violations of 
mandatory health or safety standards, thereby improving health and 
safety for miners.
Pattern of Violations
MSHA has determined that the existing pattern criteria and procedures 
contained in 30 CFR part 104 do not reflect the statutory intent for 
section 104(e) of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine 
Act). The legislative history of the Mine Act explains that Congress 
intended the pattern of violations to be an enforcement tool for 
operators who have demonstrated a disregard for the health and safety 
of miners. These mine operators, who have a chronic history of 
persistent significant and substantial (S&S) violations, needlessly 
expose miners to the same hazards again and again. This indicates a 
serious safety and health management problem at a mine. The goal of the 
pattern of violations proposed rule is to compel operators to manage 
health and safety conditions so that the root causes of S&S violations 
are found and fixed before they become a hazard to miners. The proposal 
would reflect statutory intent, simplify the pattern of violations 
criteria, and improve consistency in applying the pattern of violations 
criteria.
Addressing Targeted Hazards
Maintenance of Incombustible Content of Rock Dust in Underground Coal 
Mines
To help prevent explosion hazards, MSHA issued an emergency temporary 
standard (ETS) in response to the grave danger that miners in 
underground bituminous coal mines face when accumulations of coal dust 
are not made inert. MSHA concluded from investigations of mine 
explosions and other reports that immediate action was necessary to 
protect miners. Accumulations of coal dust can ignite, resulting in an 
explosion, or after an explosion, accumulations can propagate, 
increasing the severity of explosions. The ETS requires mine operators 
to increase the incombustible content of combined coal dust, rock dust, 
and other dust to at least 80 percent in underground bituminous coal 
mines. The ETS strengthens the protections for miners by reducing both 
the potential for and the severity of coal mine explosions.
Regulating Crystalline Silica Exposure

[[Page 79590]]

The Agency's regulatory actions also exemplify a commitment to 
protecting the most vulnerable populations while assuring broad-based 
compliance. Health hazards are pervasive in both coal and metal/
nonmetal mines (including surface and underground mines) and large and 
small mines. As mentioned previously, as part of the Secretary's 
strategy for securing safe and healthy workplaces, both MSHA and OSHA 
will be undertaking regulatory actions related to silica. Overexposure 
to crystalline silica can result in some miners developing silicosis, 
an irreversible but preventable lung disease, which ultimately may be 
fatal. In its proposed rule, MSHA plans to follow the recommendation of 
the Secretary of Labor's Advisory Committee on the Elimination of 
Pneumoconiosis Among Coal Mine Workers, National Institute for 
Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and other groups to address the 
exposure limit for respirable crystalline silica. As another example of 
intra-departmental collaboration, MSHA intends to consider OSHA's work 
on the health effects of occupational exposure to silica and OSHA's 
risk assessment in developing the appropriate standard for the mining 
industry.
Lowering Miners' Exposure to Coal Mine Dust, including Continuous 
Personal Dust Monitors
MSHA will continue its regulatory action related to preventing Black 
Lung disease. Data from the NIOSH indicate increased prevalence of coal 
workers pneumoconiosis (CWP) ``clusters'' in several geographical 
areas, particularly in the Southern Appalachian Region. MSHA published 
a notice of proposed rulemaking to address continued risk to coal 
miners from exposure to respirable coal mine dust. This regulatory 
action is part of MSHA's Comprehensive Black Lung Reduction Strategy 
for reducing miners' exposure to respirable dust. This strategy 
includes enhanced enforcement, education and training, and health 
outreach and collaboration. The major provisions of the proposal would 
lower the existing exposure limit from 2.0 mg/m3 to 1.0 mg/m3 over a 2-
year phase-in period, provide for single full-shift compliance sampling 
under both mine operator and MSHA inspector sampling programs, and 
establish sampling requirements for use of the continuous personal dust 
monitors.
Proximity Detection Systems
MSHA will issue an emergency temporary standard (ETS) to address the 
grave danger that miners face when working near mobile equipment in 
underground mines. MSHA has concluded, from investigations of accidents 
involving mobile equipment and other reports, that immediate action is 
necessary to protect miners. To date, in 2010, there have been 5 
fatalities resulting from crushing and pinning accidents. Mobile 
equipment can pin, crush, or strike a miner working near the equipment. 
Proximity detection technology can prevent these types of accidents. 
Proximity detection systems can be installed on mining machinery to 
detect the presence of personnel or equipment within a certain distance 
of the machine. The ETS would strengthen the protection for underground 
miners by reducing the potential of pinning, crushing or striking 
hazards associated with working close to mobile equipment. As a part of 
the Secretary's strategy for securing safe and healthy workplaces, OSHA 
will also undertake regulatory action related to reducing injuries and 
fatalities to workers in close proximity to moving equipment and 
vehicles.
Wage and Hour Division (WHD)
The Wage and Hour Division is responsible for administering and 
enforcing a number of laws that establish the minimum standards for 
wages and working conditions in the United States. Collectively, these 
labor standards cover most private, state, and local government 
employment.
Plan/Prevent/Protect
Right To Know Under the Fair Labor Standards Act
WHD intends to publish a proposed rule updating the recordkeeping 
regulation issued under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to assist 
employers in planning to protect workers' entitlement to wages that 
they have earned and bring greater transparency and openness to the 
workplace. The proposed rule would address notification of workers' 
status as employees or some other status such as independent 
contractors, and whether that worker is entitled to the protections of 
the FLSA. The proposed rulemaking would also explore requiring 
employers to provide a wage statement each pay period to their 
employees. This greater transparency will provide workers with 
essential information about their employment status and earnings, 
consistent with the Secretary's strategic vision. This greater 
transparency will in turn better ensure compliance by regulated 
entities and assist the Department with its enforcement efforts. This 
initiative contributes to the Department's efforts to prevent 
misclassification that denies workers employment law protections to 
which they are entitled.
As part of this Departmentwide initiative, OSHA's Injury and Illness 
Prevention Program NPRM and OFCCP's NPRM on Construction Contractor 
Affirmative Action Requirements, propose to also address employer 
analyses and worker notification as to whether an individual is an 
employee or is an independent business, volunteer, or trainee.
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)
Through the work of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, 
DOL ensures that the contractors and sub-contractors doing business at 
over 200,000 establishments provide equal employment opportunities--a 
fair and diverse workplace. OFCCP ensures workers are recruited, hired, 
trained, promoted, terminated, and compensated in a non-discriminatory 
manner by Federal contractors and helps workers in the Federal 
contractor sector by strengthening affirmative action and by combating 
discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national 
origin, disability, or status as a protected veteran.
Construction Contractor Affirmative Action Requirements
OFCCP will publish a proposed rule that would enhance the effectiveness 
of the affirmative action program requirements for Federal and 
federally assisted construction contractors and subcontractors. The 
proposed rule would strengthen the regulations that set forth the 
actions construction contractors are required to take to implement 
their affirmative action programs particularly in the areas of 
recruitment, training, and apprenticeships. OFCCP is coordinating with 
the Employment and Training Administration (ETA), which is developing a 
proposed regulation revising the equal opportunity regulatory framework 
under the National Apprenticeship Act.
Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)
The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) is responsible for 
administering and enforcing the fiduciary, reporting and disclosure, 
and health coverage provisions of title I of the Employee Retirement 
Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA). This includes recent amendments 
and additions to ERISA enacted in the

[[Page 79591]]

Pension Protection Act of 2006, as well as new health coverage 
provisions under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 
(the Affordable Care Act). EBSA's regulatory plan initiatives are 
intended to improve health benefits and retirement security for workers 
in every type of job at every income level. EBSA is charged with 
protecting approximately 150 million Americans covered by an estimated 
708,000 private retirement plans, 2.6 million health plans, and similar 
numbers of other welfare benefit plans which together hold $5.2 
trillion in assets.
EBSA will continue to issue guidance implementing the health reform 
provisions of the Affordable Care Act and other laws, such as the 
Mental Health Parity and Addiction Equity Act, to help provide better 
quality health care for American workers and their families. EBSA's 
regulations reduce discrimination in health coverage, promote better 
access to quality coverage, and protect the ability of individuals and 
businesses to keep their current health coverage. Many regulations are 
joint rulemakings with the Departments of Health and Human Services and 
the Treasury.
Using regulatory changes to produce greater openness and transparency 
is an integral part of EBSA's contribution to a Departmentwide 
compliance strategy. These efforts will not only enhance EBSA's 
enforcement toolbox but will encourage greater levels of compliance by 
the regulated community and enhance awareness among workers of their 
rights and benefits. Several proposals from the EBSA agenda expand 
disclosure requirements, substantially enhancing the availability of 
information to employee benefit plan participants and beneficiaries and 
employers, and strengthening the retirement security of America's 
workers.
Health Reform Implementation
These regulations require better disclosure to participants and 
beneficiaries regarding their health plan coverage. These disclosures 
must now provide new and better descriptions regarding:
Certain enrollment opportunities and access to health coverage; rights 
to internal claims and appeals, and external review of health plan 
denials; access to providers; and a group health plan's status as a 
grandfathered health plan, which affects consumer protections under the 
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
Enhancing participant protections
EBSA recently proposed amendments to its regulations to clarify the 
circumstances under which a person will be considered a ``fiduciary'' 
when providing investment advice to employee benefit plans and their 
participants and beneficiaries of such plans. The amendments would take 
into account current practices of investment advisers and the 
expectations of plan officials and participants who receive investment 
advice. This initiative is intended to assure retirement security for 
workers in all jobs regardless of income level by ensuring that 
financial advisers and similar persons are required to meet ERISA's 
strict standards of fiduciary responsibility.
Lifetime Income Options
In February 2010, EBSA published a request for information concerning 
steps it can take by regulation, or otherwise, to encourage the 
offering of lifetime annuities or similar lifetime benefits 
distribution options for participants and beneficiaries of defined 
contribution plans. EBSA recently held a hearing with the Department of 
the Treasury and Internal Revenue Service to further explore these 
possibilities during the fall 2010 regulatory cycle. This initiative is 
intended to assure retirement security for workers in all jobs 
regardless of income level by helping to ensure that participants and 
beneficiaries have the benefit of their plan savings throughout 
retirement.
Promoting Openness and Transparency
In addition to its health care reform and participant protection 
initiatives, EBSA is pursuing a regulatory program that, as reflected 
in the Unified Agenda, is designed to encourage, foster, and promote 
openness, transparency, and communication with respect to the 
management and operations of pension plans, as well as participant 
rights and benefits under such plans. Among other things, EBSA will be 
issuing a final rule that will ensure that the participants and 
beneficiaries in participant-directed individual account plans are 
provided the information they need, including information about plan 
and investment-related fees and expenses, to make informed decisions 
about the management of their individual accounts and the investment of 
their retirement savings (RIN 1210-AB07); EBSA also will be issuing a 
proposed rule addressing the requirement that administrators of defined 
benefit pension plans annually disclose the funding status of their 
plan to the plan's participants and beneficiaries (RIN l210-AB18). 
EBSA's Unified Agenda also includes the publication of a proposed rule 
requiring the automatic furnishing of a statement to pension plan 
participants informing them of their accrued and vested pension 
benefits, as well as other information pertinent to their retirement 
security (RIN 1210-AB20). In addition, EBSA will be amending the 
disclosure requirements applicable to plan investment options, 
including Qualified Default Investment Alternatives, to better ensure 
that participants understand the operations and risks associated with 
investments in target date funds (RIN 1210-AB38). A complete listing of 
EBSA's regulatory initiatives (both Plan and non-Plan items) is 
provided in the Unified Agenda portion of this document.
Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS)
The Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) administers and 
enforces most provisions of the Labor-Management Reporting and 
Disclosure Act of 1959 (LMRDA). The LMRDA promotes labor-management 
transparency by requiring unions, employers, labor-relations 
consultants, and others to file reports that are publicly available. 
The LMRDA includes provisions protecting union member rights to 
participate in their union's governance, to run for office and fully 
exercise their union citizenship, as well as procedural safeguards to 
ensure free and fair union elections. Besides enforcing these 
provisions, OLMS also ensures the financial accountability of unions, 
their officers and employees, through enforcement and voluntary 
compliance efforts. Because of these activities, OLMS better ensures 
that workers have a more effective voice in the governance of their 
unions, which in turn affords them a more effective voice in their 
workplaces. OLMS also administers certain provisions of Executive Order 
13496 that require Federal contractors to notify their employees 
concerning their rights under Federal labor laws.
Openness and Transparency
Persuader Agreements: Employer and Labor Consultant Reporting under the 
LMRDA
OLMS is proposing a regulatory initiative to provide workers with 
information critical to their effective participation in the workplace, 
both as union members and as employees. OLMS intends to propose 
regulations to better implement the public disclosure objectives of the 
LMRDA in situations where an employer engages a consultant

[[Page 79592]]

in order to persuade employees concerning their rights to organize and 
bargain collectively. Under LMRDA section 203, an employer must report 
any agreement or arrangement with a consultant to persuade employees 
concerning their rights to organize and collectively bargain, or to 
obtain certain information concerning the activities of employees or a 
labor organization in connection with a labor dispute involving the 
employer. The consultant is also required to report such an agreement 
or arrangement with an employer. Statutory exceptions to these 
reporting requirements are set forth in LMRDA section 203(c), which 
provides, in part, that employers and consultants are not required to 
file a report by reason of the consultant's giving or agreeing to give 
``advice'' to the employer. The Department is reconsidering the current 
policy concerning the scope of the ``advice exception.'' When workers 
have the necessary information about arrangements that have been made 
by their employer to persuade them whether or not to form, join or 
assist a union, they are better able to make a more informed choice 
about representation.
Employment and Training Administration (ETA)
The Employment and Training Administration (ETA) administers and 
oversees programs that prepare workers for good jobs at good wages by 
providing high quality job training, employment, labor market 
information, and income maintenance services through its national 
network of One-Stop centers. The programs within ETA promote pathways 
to economic independence for individuals and families. Through several 
laws, ETA is charged with administering numerous employment and 
training programs designed to assist the American worker in developing 
the knowledge, skills, and abilities that are sought after in the 21st 
century's economy.
Openness and Transparency
Temporary Non Agricultural Employment of H-2B Aliens in the United 
States
As part of the Department's labor certification responsibilities, ETA 
certifies whether U.S. workers capable of performing the jobs for which 
employers are seeking foreign workers are available and whether the 
employment of foreign workers will adversely affect the wages and 
working conditions of U.S. workers similarly employed. Through the Wage 
and Hour Division (WHD), the Department enforces compliance with the 
conditions of an H-2B petition and Department of Labor-approved 
temporary labor certification.
The proposed rule seeks to ensure that only those employers who 
demonstrate a real temporary need for foreign workers will have access 
to the H-2B program. The proposed rule also will seek to provide U.S. 
workers with greater access to the jobs employers wish to fill with 
temporary H-2B workers through more robust recruitment by employers to 
demonstrate the unavailability of U.S. workers and through the creation 
of a national, electronic job registry. In addition, the Department is 
reviewing the current wage determination methodology to ensure that 
wages are not being adversely affected across industries and 
occupations. The proposed rule will explore strengthening existing 
worker protections, establishing new protections, and enhancing ETA 
program integrity measures and WHD enforcement to ensure adequate 
protections for both U.S. and H-2B workers. The proposal will include 
greater transparency and openness to provide U.S. workers with greater 
information and access to the job opportunities.
Addressing Targeted Concerns of Workers
Equal Employment Opportunity in Apprenticeship and Training, Amendment 
of Regulations
The revision of the National Apprenticeship Act Equal Opportunity in 
Apprenticeship and Training (EEO) regulations is a critical element in 
the Department's vision to promote and expand registered apprenticeship 
opportunities in the 21st Century while safeguarding the welfare and 
safety of all apprentices. In October 2008, ETA issued a final rule 
updating 29 CFR part 29, the regulatory framework for registration of 
apprenticeship programs and apprentices, and administration of the 
National Apprenticeship System. The companion EEO regulations, 29 CFR 
part 30, have not been amended since 1978. ETA proposes to update part 
30 EEO in the Apprenticeship and Training regulations to ensure that 
they act in concert with the 2008 revised part 29 rule. The proposed 
EEO regulations also will further Secretary Solis' vision of good jobs 
for everyone by ensuring that apprenticeship program sponsors develop 
and fully implement affirmative action efforts that provide equal 
opportunity for all applicants to apprenticeship and apprentices, 
regardless of race, gender, national origin, or disability. ETA is 
coordinating with OFCCP, which is developing a proposed regulation that 
would enhance the effectiveness of the affirmative action program 
requirements for Federal and federally assisted construction 
contractors and subcontractors.
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

94. CONSTRUCTION CONTRACTOR AFFIRMATIVE ACTION REQUIREMENTS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


sec 201, 202, 205, 211, 301, 302, and 303 of EO 11246, as amended; 30 
FR 12319; 32 FR 14303, as amended by EO 12086


CFR Citation:


41 CFR 60-1; 41 CFR 60-4


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) would revise the regulations 
in 41 CFR part 60-4 implementing the affirmative action requirements of 
Executive Order 11246 that are applicable to Federal and federally 
assisted construction contractors. The NPRM will strengthen and enhance 
the effectiveness of the affirmative action program requirements for 
Federal and federally-assisted construction contractors and 
subcontractors, particularly in the area of recruitment and job 
training.


Statement of Need:


The regulations implementing construction contractor affirmative action 
obligations under Executive Order 11246, as amended, were last revised 
in 1980. Recent data show that disparities in the representation of 
women and racial minorities continue to exist in on-site construction 
occupations in the construction industry. The NPRM would remove 
outdated regulatory provisions, propose a new method for establishing 
affirmative action goals, and propose

[[Page 79593]]

other revisions to the affirmative action requirements that reflect the 
realities of the labor market and employment practices in the 
construction industry today.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This action is not required by statute or court order. Legal Authority: 
Sections 201, 202, 205, 211, 301, 302, and 303 of E.O. 11246, as 
amended, 30 FR 12319: 32 FR 14303, as amended by E.O. 12086.


Alternatives:


Regulatory alternatives will be addressed as the NPRM is developed


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


There may be some additional costs to contractors as a result of the 
increased scope of required actions. The benefits would likely include 
increased diversity in construction workplaces and increased 
opportunities for women and minorities to get on-site construction 
jobs. More detailed cost and benefit analyses will be made as the NPRM 
is developed.


Risks:


Failure to provide updated regulations may impede the equal opportunity 
rights of some workers in protected classes.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


None


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Sandra M. Dillon
Deputy Director, Division of Policy, Planning and Program Development
Department of Labor
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
N3422
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-0102
TDD Phone: 202 693-1337
Fax: 202 693-1304
Email: ofccp-public@dol.gov
Related RIN: Previously reported as 1215-AB81
RIN: 1250-AA01
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

95. PERSUADER AGREEMENTS: EMPLOYER AND LABOR RELATIONS CONSULTANT 
REPORTING UNDER THE LMRDA

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


29 USC 433; 29 USC 438


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 405; 29 CFR 406


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department intends to publish notice and comment rulemaking seeking 
consideration of a revised interpretation of section 203(c) of the 
Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA). That statutory 
provision creates an ``advice'' exemption from reporting requirements 
that apply to employers and other persons in connection with persuading 
employees about the right to organize and bargain collectively. A 
proposed revised interpretation would narrow the scope of the advice 
exemption.


Statement of Need:


The Department of Labor is proposing a regulatory initiative to better 
implement the public disclosure objectives of the Labor-Management 
Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA) regarding employer-consultant 
agreements to persuade employees concerning their rights to organize 
and bargain collectively. Under LMRDA section 203, an employer must 
report any agreement or arrangement with a third party consultant to 
persuade employees as to their collective bargaining rights or to 
obtain certain information concerning the activities of employees or a 
labor organization in connection with a labor dispute involving the 
employer. The consultant also is required to report concerning such an 
agreement or arrangement with an employer. Statutory exceptions to 
these reporting requirements are set forth in LMRDA section 203(c), 
which provides, in part, that employers and consultants are not 
required to file a report by reason of the consultant's giving or 
agreeing to give ``advice'' to the employer. The Department believes 
that its current policy concerning the scope of the ``advice 
exception'' is overbroad and that a narrower construction would better 
allow for the employer and consultant reporting intended by the LMRDA. 
Regulatory action is needed to provide workers with information 
critical to their effective participation in the workplace.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This proposed rulemaking is authorized under U.S.C. sections 433 and 
438 and applies to regulations at 29 CFR part 405 and 29 CFR part 406.


Alternatives:


Alternatives will be developed and considered in the course of notice 
and comment rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Anticipated costs and benefits of this proposed regulatory initiative 
have not been assessed and will be determined at a later date, as 
appropriate.


Risks:


This action does not affect public health, safety, or the environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.olms.dol.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

[[Page 79594]]

Agency Contact:
Andrew R. Davis
Chief, Division of Interpretations and Standards, Office of Labor-
Management Standards
Department of Labor
Office of Labor-Management Standards
Room N-5609, FP Building
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1254
Fax: 202 693-1340
Email: davis.andrew@dol.gov
Related RIN: Previously reported as 1215-AB79
RIN: 1245-AA03
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Wage and Hour Division (WHD)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

96. RIGHT TO KNOW UNDER THE FAIR LABOR STANDARDS ACT

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Legal Authority:


29 USC 211(c)


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 516


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department of Labor proposes to update the recordkeeping 
regulations under the Fair Labor Standards Act in order to enhance the 
transparency and disclosure to workers of their status as the 
employer's employee or some other status, such as an independent 
contractor, and if an employee, how their pay is computed. The 
Department also proposes to clarify that the mandatory manual 
preparation of ``homeworker'' handbooks applies only to employers of 
employees performing homework in the restricted industries. The title 
of this proposed rule has changed to better reflect the purpose of this 
action.


Statement of Need:


The recordkeeping regulation issued under the Fair Labor Standards Act 
(FLSA), 29 CFR part 516, specifies the scope and manner of records 
covered employers must keep that demonstrate compliance with minimum 
wage, overtime, and child labor requirements under the FLSA, or the 
records to be kept that confirm particular exemptions from some of the 
Act's requirements may apply. This proposal intends to update the 
recordkeeping requirements to foster more openness and transparency in 
demonstrating employers' compliance with applicable requirements to 
their workers, to better ensure compliance by regulated entities, and 
to assist in enforcement. In addition, the proposal intends to update 
the requirements for live-in domestic employees and, to clarify that 
the mandatory manual preparation of ``homeworker'' handbooks applies 
only to employers of employees performing homework in the restricted 
industries.


Summary of Legal Basis:


These regulations are authorized by section 11 of the Fair Labor 
Standards Act, 29 U.S.C. 211.


Alternatives:


Alternatives will be developed in considering proposed revisions to the 
current recordkeeping requirements. The public will be invited to 
provide comments on the proposed revisions and possible alternatives.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Department will prepare estimates of the anticipated costs and 
benefits associated with the proposed rule.


Risks:


This action does not affect public health, safety, or the environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State, Tribal


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Montaniel Navarro
Fair Labor Standards Act Branch Chief, Division of Enforcement Policy
Department of Labor
Wage and Hour Division
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
Room S-3502
FP Building
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-0067
Fax: 202 693-1387
Related RIN: Previously reported as 1215-AB78
RIN: 1235-AA04
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Employment and Training Administration (ETA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

97. LABOR CERTIFICATION PROCESS AND ENFORCEMENT FOR TEMPORARY 
EMPLOYMENT IN OCCUPATIONS OTHER THAN AGRICULTURE OR REGISTERED NURSING 
IN THE UNITED STATES (H-2B WORKERS)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


8 USC 1101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(B)); 8 USC 1184(c)(1); 8 CFR 214.2(h)


CFR Citation:


20 CFR 655


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations require employers 
to apply for a temporary labor certification from the Department of 
Labor before H-2B visas may be approved. DOL certifies that there are 
not sufficient U.S. worker(s) who are capable of performing the 
temporary services or labor at the time of an application for a visa, 
and that the employment of the H-2B workers will not adversely affect 
the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers. 
This regulation proposes to re-engineer the H-2B program in order to 
enhance transparency and strengthen program integrity and protections 
of both U.S. workers and H-2B workers.


Statement of Need:


The Department has determined that a new rulemaking effort is necessary 
for

[[Page 79595]]

the H-2B program. The policy underpinnings of the current regulation, 
e.g., streamlining the H-2B process to defer many determinations of 
program compliance until after an application has been adjudicated, do 
not provide an adequate level of protection for either U.S. or foreign 
workers. The proposed rule seeks to enhance worker protections and 
increase the availability of job opportunities to qualified U.S. 
workers.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Department of Labor's authority to revise these regulations derives 
from 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(B) and 8 U.S.C. 1184(c)(1) and 8 CFR 
214.2(h).


Alternatives:


The public will be afforded an opportunity to provide comments on the 
proposed regulatory changes when the Department publishes the NPRM in 
the Federal Register. A final rule will be issued after analysis of, 
and response to, public comments.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Preliminary estimates of the anticipated costs of this regulatory 
action are under development. The Department of Labor is seeking 
information on potential additional or actual costs from employers and 
other interested parties through the NPRM in order to better assess the 
costs and benefits of the proposed provisions of the program. The 
proposed changes are thought to raise ``novel legal or policy issues'' 
but are not economically significant within the context of Executive 
Order 12866 and are not a ``major rule'' under section 804 for the 
Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act.


Risks:


This action does not affect the public health, safety, or the 
environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


State


Agency Contact:
Dr. William L. Carlson
Administrator, Office of Foreign Labor Certification
Department of Labor
Employment and Training Administration
FP Building
Room C-4312
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-3010
Email: carlson.william@dol.gov
RIN: 1205-AB58
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--ETA

<###DOC>

98. EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY IN APPRENTICESHIP AND TRAINING, 
AMENDMENT OF REGULATIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


sec 1, 50 Stat 664, as amended (29 USC 50; 40 USC 276c; 5 USC 301); 
Reorganization Plan No 14 of 1950, 64 Stat 1267 (5 USC app p 534)


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 30 (Revision)


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


Revisions to the equal opportunity regulatory framework for the 
National Apprenticeship Act are a critical element in the Department's 
vision to promote and expand Registered Apprenticeship opportunities in 
the 21st century while continuing to safeguard the welfare and safety 
of apprentices. In October 2008, the Agency issued a Final Rule 
updating regulations for Apprenticeship Programs and Labor Standards 
for Registration. These regulations, codified at title 29 Code of 
Federal Regulations (CFR) part 29, had not been updated since 1977. The 
companion regulations, 29 CFR part 30, Equal Employment Opportunity 
(EEO) in Apprenticeship and Training, have not been amended since 1978.


The Agency now proposes to update 29 CFR part 30 to ensure that the 
National Registered Apprenticeship System is consistent and in 
alignment with EEO law, as it has developed since 1978, and recent 
revisions to title 29 CFR part 29. This second phase of regulatory 
updates will ensure that Registered Apprenticeship is positioned to 
continue to provide economic opportunity for millions of Americans 
while keeping pace with these new requirements.


Statement of Need:


Federal regulations for Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) in 
Apprenticeship and Training have not been updated since 1978. Updates 
to these regulations are necessary to ensure that DOL regulatory 
requirements governing the National Registered Apprenticeship System 
are consistent with the current state of EEO law, the ADA, and recent 
revisions to title 29 CFR part 29.


Summary of Legal Basis:


These regulations are authorized by the National Apprenticeship Act of 
1937 (29 U.S.C. 50) and the Copeland Act (40 U.S.C. 276c). These 
regulations will set forth policies and procedures to promote equality 
of opportunity in apprenticeship programs registered with the U.S. 
Department of Labor or in State Apprenticeship Agencies recognized by 
the U.S. Department of Labor.


Alternatives:


The public will be afforded an opportunity to provide comments on the 
proposed amendment to Apprenticeship EEO regulations when the 
Department publishes a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in the 
Federal Register. A Final Rule will be issued after analysis and 
incorporation of public comments to the NRPM.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The proposed changes are thought to raise ``novel legal or policy 
issue'' but are not economically significant within the context of 
Executive Order 12866 and are not a ``major rule'' under Section 804 of 
the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act.


Risks:


This action does not affect the public health, safety, or the 
environment.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Federal, State, Tribal

[[Page 79596]]

Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
John V. Ladd
Office of Apprenticeship
Department of Labor
Employment and Training Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
Room N5311
FP Building
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-2796
Fax: 202 693-3799
Email: ladd.john@dol.gov
RIN: 1205-AB59
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA)

                              -----------

                             PRERULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

99. LIFETIME INCOME OPTIONS FOR PARTICIPANTS AND BENEFICIARIES IN 
RETIREMENT PLANS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


29 USC 1135; ERISA sec 505


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This initiative will explore what steps, if any, that the Department 
could or should take, by regulation or otherwise, to enhance the 
retirement security of American workers by facilitating access to and 
use of lifetime income or income arrangements designed to provide a 
stream of income after retirement.


Statement of Need:


With a continuing trend away from defined benefit plans to defined 
contribution plans, employees are not only increasingly responsible for 
the adequacy of their retirement savings, but also for ensuring that 
their savings last throughout their retirement. Employees may benefit 
from access to and use of lifetime income or other arrangements that 
will reduce the risk of running out of funds during the retirement 
years. However, both access to and use of such arrangements in defined 
contribution plans is limited. The Department, taking into 
consideration recommendations of the ERISA Advisory Council and others, 
intends to explore what steps, if any, it could or should take, by 
regulation or otherwise, to enhance the retirement security of workers 
by increasing access to and use of such arrangements.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 505 of ERISA provides that the Secretary may prescribe such 
regulations as she finds necessary and appropriate to carry out the 
provisions of title I of the Act.


Alternatives:


Alternatives will be considered following a determination of the scope 
and nature of the regulatory guidance needed by the public.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Preliminary estimates of the anticipated costs and benefits will be 
developed, as appropriate, following a determination regarding the 
alternatives to be considered.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
RFI                             02/02/10                     75 FR 5253
RFI Comment Period End          05/03/10
Public Hearing Notice           08/10/10                    75 FR 48367
Public Hearing                  09/14/10
Review Public Record            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Jeffrey J. Turner
Chief, Division of Regulations, Office of Regulations and 
Interpretations
Department of Labor
Employee Benefits Security Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-5655
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-8500
RIN: 1210-AB33
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--EBSA

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

100. DEFINITION OF ``FIDUCIARY''

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


29 USC 1002; ERISA sec 3(21); 29 USC 1135; ERISA sec 505


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 2510.3-21(c)


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would amend the regulatory definition of the term 
``fiduciary'' set forth at 29 CFR 2510.3-21 (c) to more broadly define 
as employee benefit plan fiduciaries persons who render investment 
advice to plans for a fee within the meaning of section 3(21) of ERISA. 
The amendment would take into account current practices of investment 
advisers and the expectations of plan officials and participants who 
receive investment advice.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking is needed to bring the definition of ``fiduciary'' into 
line with investment advice practices and to recast the current 
regulation to better reflect relationships between investment advisers 
and their employee benefit plan clients. The current regulation may 
inappropriately limit the types of investment advice relationships that 
should give rise to fiduciary duties on the part of the investment 
adviser.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 505 of ERISA provides that the Secretary may prescribe such 
regulations as she finds necessary and appropriate to carry out the 
provisions of title I of the Act. Regulation 29 CFR 2510.3-21(c) 
defines the term fiduciary for certain purposes under section 3(21) of 
ERISA.


Alternatives:


Alternatives will be considered following a determination of the scope 
and nature of the regulatory guidance needed by the public.

[[Page 79597]]

Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Preliminary estimates of the anticipated costs and benefits will be 
developed, as appropriate, following a determination regarding the 
alternatives to be considered.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            10/22/10                    75 FR 65263
NPRM Comment Period End         01/20/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Jeffrey J. Turner
Chief, Division of Regulations, Office of Regulations and 
Interpretations
Department of Labor
Employee Benefits Security Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-5655
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-8500
RIN: 1210-AB32
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

101. RESPIRABLE CRYSTALLINE SILICA STANDARD

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


30 USC 811; 30 USC 813


CFR Citation:


30 CFR 56 to 57; 30 CFR 70 to 72; 30 CFR 90


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


Current standards limit exposures to quartz (crystalline silica) in 
respirable dust. The coal mining industry standard is based on the 
formula 10 mg/m3 divided by the percentage of quartz where the quartz 
percent is greater than 5 percent calculated as an MRE equivalent 
concentration. The metal and nonmetal mining industry standard is based 
on the 1973 American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists 
(ACGIH) Threshold Limit Values formula: 10 mg/m3 divided by the 
percentage of quartz plus 2. Overexposure to crystalline silica can 
result in some miners developing silicosis, an irreversible but 
preventable lung disease, which ultimately may be fatal. Both formulas 
are designed to limit exposures to 0.1 mg/m3 (100 ug) of silica. The 
Secretary of Labor's Advisory Committee on the Elimination of 
Pneumoconiosis Among Coal Mine Workers made several recommendations 
related to reducing exposure to silica. NIOSH recommends a 50 ug/m3 
exposure limit for respirable crystalline silica. MSHA will publish a 
proposed rule to address miners' exposure to respirable crystalline 
silica.


Statement of Need:


MSHA standards are outdated; current regulations may not protect 
workers from developing silicosis. Evidence indicates that miners 
continue to develop silicosis. MSHA's proposed regulatory action 
exemplifies the agency's commitment to protecting the most vulnerable 
populations while assuring broad-based compliance. MSHA will regulate 
based on sound science to eliminate or reduce the hazards with the 
broadest and most serious consequences. MSHA intends to use OSHA's work 
on the health effects and risk assessment, adapting it as necessary for 
the mining industry.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this standard is authorized by sections 101 and 103 of 
the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977.


Alternatives:


This rulemaking would improve health protection from that afforded by 
the existing standards. MSHA will consider alternative methods of 
addressing miners' exposures based on the capabilities of the sampling 
and analytical methods.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA will prepare estimates of the anticipated costs and benefits 
associated with the proposed rule.


Risks:


For over 70 years, toxicology information and epidemiological studies 
have shown that exposure to respirable crystalline silica presents 
potential health risks to miners. These potential adverse health 
effects include simple silicosis and progressive massive fibrosis (lung 
scarring). Evidence indicates that exposure to silica may cause cancer. 
MSHA believes that the health evidence forms a reasonable basis for 
reducing miners' exposure to respirable crystalline silica.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            07/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


URL For More Information:
www.msha.gov/regsinfo.htm

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB36
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--MSHA

<###DOC>

102. LOWERING MINERS' EXPOSURE TO COAL MINE DUST, INCLUDING CONTINUOUS 
PERSONAL DUST MONITORS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


30 USC 811; 30 USC 813(h)


CFR Citation:


30 CFR 70; 30 CFR 71; 30 CFR 72; 30 CFR 75; 30 CFR 90


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Federal Coal Mine Health and Safety Act of 1969 established the 
first comprehensive respirable dust

[[Page 79598]]

standards for coal mines. These standards were designed to reduce the 
incidence of coal workers' pneumoconiosis (CWP) or (black lung) and 
silicosis and eventually eliminate these diseases. While significant 
progress has been made toward improving the health conditions in our 
Nation's coal mines, miners continue to be at risk of developing 
occupational lung disease, according to the National Institute for 
Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). In September 1995, NIOSH issued 
a Criteria Document in which it recommended that the respirable coal 
mine dust permissible exposure limit (PEL) be cut in half. In February 
1996, the Secretary of Labor convened a Federal Advisory Committee on 
the Elimination of Pneumoconiosis Among Coal Miners (Advisory 
Committee) to assess the adequacy of MSHA's current program and 
standards to control respirable dust in underground and surface coal 
mines, as well as other ways to eliminate black lung and silicosis 
among coal miners. The Committee represented the labor, industry and 
academic communities. The Committee submitted its report to the 
Secretary of Labor in November 1996, with the majority of the 
recommendations unanimously supported by the Committee members. The 
Committee recommended a number of actions to reduce miners' exposure to 
respirable coal mine dust. This proposed rule is an important element 
in MSHA's Comprehensive Black Lung Reduction Strategy (Strategy) to 
``End Black Lung Now'' and combines the following rulemaking actions: 
(1) ``Occupational Exposure to Coal Mine Dust (Lowering Exposure),'' 
RIN 1219-AB64; (2) ``Verification of Underground Coal Mine Operators' 
Dust Control Plans and Compliance Sampling for Respirable Dust,'' RIN 
1219-AB14; (3) ``Determination of Concentration of Respirable Coal Mine 
Dust,'' RIN 1219-AB18; and (4) ``Respirable Coal Mine Dust: Continuous 
Personal Dust Monitor (CPDM),'' RIN 1219-AB48.


Statement of Need:


Comprehensive respirable dust standards for coal mines were designed to 
reduce the incidence, and eventually eliminate, CWP and silicosis. 
While significant progress has been made toward improving the health 
conditions in our Nation's coal mines, miners remain at risk of 
developing occupational lung disease, according to NIOSH. Recent NIOSH 
data indicates increased prevalence of CWP ``clusters'' in several 
geographical areas, particularly in the Southern Appalachian Region.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this regulation is authorized by the Federal Mine 
Safety and Health Act of 1977 as amended by the Mine Improvement and 
New Emergency Response Act of 2006.


Alternatives:


MSHA is considering amendments, revisions, and additions to existing 
standards.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA developed a preliminary regulatory economic analysis to accompany 
the proposed rule.


Risks:


Respirable coal dust is one of the most serious occupational hazards in 
the mining industry. Occupational exposure to excessive levels of 
respirable coal mine dust can cause coal workers' pneumoconiosis and 
silicosis, which are potentially disabling and can cause death. MSHA is 
pursuing both regulatory and nonregulatory actions to eliminate these 
diseases through the control of coal mine respirable dust levels in 
mines and reduction of miners' exposure. MSHA developed a risk 
assessment to accompany the proposed rule.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            10/19/10                    75 FR 64412
Hearings                        11/15/10                    75 FR 69617
NPRM Comment Period End         02/28/11
NPRM-Rescheduling of 
    Public Hearings; 
    Correction                  11/30/10                    75 FR 73995
Post Hearing Comment 
    Period End                  02/28/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
http://www.msha.gov/S&HINFO/BlackLung/homepage2009.asp

URL For Public Comments:
 http://www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB64
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--MSHA

<###DOC>

103. SAFETY AND HEALTH MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS FOR MINES

Priority:


Other Significant


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


30 USC 811 and 812


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


MSHA held public meetings and gathered information and suggestions from 
the mining community on effective, comprehensive safety and health 
management programs, including programs used in the mining industry. 
MSHA will use all information received to develop a proposed rule for 
safety and health management programs to eliminate hazards and prevent 
injuries and illnesses at mines.


Statement of Need:


Mining is one of the most hazardous industries in this country. Yet 
year after year, many mines experience low injury and illness rates and 
low violation rates. For these mine operators, preventing harm to their 
miners is more than compliance with safety and health requirements; it 
reflects an embodiment of a culture of safety--from CEO to the miner to 
the contractor. This culture of safety derives from a commitment to a 
systematic, effective, comprehensive management of safety and health at 
mines with full participation of all miners.


MSHA believes requiring effective safety and health management

[[Page 79599]]

programs in mining will create a sustained industry-wide effort to 
eliminate hazards and will result in the prevention of injuries and 
illnesses.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this standard is authorized by section 101 of the 
Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 as amended by the Mine 
Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006.


Alternatives:


No reasonable alternatives to this regulation would be as comprehensive 
or as effective in eliminating hazards and preventing injuries and 
illnesses.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA will develop a preliminary regulatory economic analysis to 
accompany the proposed rule.


Risks:


The lack of a comprehensive safety and health management program 
contributes to a higher incidence of injury and illness rates and 
higher violation rates.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB71
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--MSHA

<###DOC>

104. PATTERN OF VIOLATIONS

Priority:


Other Significant


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


30 USC 814(e); 30 USC 957


CFR Citation:


30 CFR 104


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


MSHA is preparing a proposed rule to revise the Agency's existing 
regulation for pattern of violations contained in 30 CFR part 104. MSHA 
has determined that the existing pattern criteria and procedures do not 
reflect the statutory intent for section 104(e) of the Federal Mine 
Safety and Health Act of 1977 (Mine Act) that operators manage health 
and safety conditions at mines so that the root causes of significant 
and substantial (S&S) violations are addressed before they become a 
hazard to the health and safety of miners. The legislative history of 
the Mine Act explains that Congress intended the pattern of violations 
tool be used for operators who have demonstrated a disregard for the 
health and safety of miners. The proposal would reflect statutory 
intent, simplify the pattern of violations criteria, and improve 
consistency in applying the patterns of violations criteria.


Statement of Need:


The pattern of violations provision was a new enforcement tool in the 
Mine Act. The Mine Act places the ultimate responsibility for ensuring 
the safety and health of miners on mine operators. The goal of the 
pattern of violations proposed rule is to compel operators to manage 
health and safety conditions so that the root causes of S&S violations 
are found and fixed before they become a hazard to miners. MSHA's 
existing regulation is not consistent with the language, purpose, and 
legislative history of the Mine Act and hinders the Agency's use of 
pattern of violations to identify chronic violators who thumb their 
noses at the law by a continuing cycle of citation and abatement.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this standard is authorized by sections 104(e) and 957 
of the Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977.


Alternatives:


MSHA will consider alternative criteria for determining when a pattern 
of significant and substantial violations exists in order to improve 
health and safety conditions in mines and provide protection for 
miners. Congress provided the Secretary with broad discretion in 
determining criteria, recognizing that MSHA may need to modify the 
criteria as Agency experience dictates.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA will prepare estimates of the anticipated costs and benefits 
associated with the proposed rule.


Risks:


Mine operators with a chronic history of persistent serious violations 
needlessly expose miners to the same hazards again and again. These 
operators demonstrate a disregard for the safety and health of miners; 
this indicates a serious safety and health management problem at the 
mine. The existing regulation has not been effective in reducing 
repeated risks to miners at these mines.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
 http://www.msha.gov/regsinfo.htm

URL For Public Comments:
http://www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB73
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--MSHA

<###DOC>

105.  MAINTENANCE OF INCOMBUSTIBLE CONTENT OF ROCK DUST IN 
UNDERGROUND COAL MINES

Priority:


Other Significant

[[Page 79600]]

Legal Authority:


30 USC 811, 864


CFR Citation:


30 CFR sec 75.403


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) issued an emergency 
temporary standard (ETS) under section 101(b) of the Federal Mine 
Safety and Health Act of 1977 in response to the grave danger that 
miners in underground bituminous coal mines face when accumulations of 
coal dust are not made inert. MSHA concluded from investigations of 
mine explosions and other reports that immediate action was necessary 
to protect miners.


Accumulations of coal dust can ignite, resulting in an explosion, or 
after an explosion, it can propagate, increasing the severity of the 
explosion. The ETS requires mine operators to increase the 
incombustible content of combined coal dust, rock dust, and other dust 
to at least 80 percent in underground areas of bituminous mines. The 
ETS further requires that the incombustible content of such combined 
dust be raised 0.4 percent for each 0.1 percent of methane present. The 
ETS strengthens the protection for miners by reducing the potential for 
a coal mine explosion.


Statement of Need:


MSHA determined that a revised standard for ``Maintenance of 
Incombustible Content of Rock Dust'' is necessary to immediately 
protect underground coal miners from hazards of coal dust explosions. 
This determination is based on: (1) MSHA's accident investigation 
reports of mine explosions in intake air courses that involved coal 
dust (Dubaniewicz 2009); (2) the National Institute for Occupational 
Safety and Health's Report of Investigations 9679 (Cashdollar et al. 
2010), ``Recommendations for a New Rock Dusting Standard to Prevent 
Coal Dust Explosions in Intake Airways``; and (3) MSHA's experience and 
data.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this standard is authorized by section 101(b) of the 
Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977.


Alternatives:


MSHA will consider revisions to the ETS, based on public comments 
received during the rulemaking process.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA estimates that the ETS would result in approximately $22.0 million 
in yearly costs for the underground bituminous coal mining industry. 
The ETS provides additional safety protection for miners in underground 
bituminous coal mines from the explosion hazard of coal and other 
dusts. MSHA estimates that, on average, the ETS would prevent 
approximately 1.5 deaths every year and would prevent one additional 
injury about every 4 years.


Risks:


Based on NIOSH's data and recommendations, and MSHA's data and 
experience, the Secretary determined that miners are exposed to grave 
danger in areas of underground bituminous coal mines that are not 
properly and sufficiently rock dusted in accordance with the 
requirements in this ETS.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Emergency Temporary 
    Standard                    09/23/10                    75 FR 57849
Hearing                         10/26/10
Hearing                         10/28/10
Hearing                         11/16/10
Hearing                         11/18/10
Comment Period End              12/20/10
Final Action                    06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.msha.gov/regsinfo.htm

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB76
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--MSHA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

106. PROXIMITY DETECTION SYSTEMS FOR UNDERGROUND MINES

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


30 USC 811


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) will issue an 
emergency temporary standard (ETS) under section 101(b) of the Federal 
Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 in response to the grave danger that 
miners face when working near mobile equipment in underground mines. 
MSHA has concluded, from investigations of accidents involving mobile 
equipment and other reports, that immediate action is necessary to 
protect miners. To date, in 2010, there have been five fatalities 
resulting from crushing and pinning accidents.


Mobile equipment can pin, crush, or strike a miner working near the 
equipment. Proximity detection technology can prevent these types of 
accidents. The ETS would strengthen the protection for underground 
miners by reducing the potential of pinning, crushing or striking 
hazards associated with working close to mobile equipment. As a part of 
the Secretary's strategy for securing safe and healthy workplaces, the 
Mine Safety and Health Administration will undertake regulatory action 
related to reducing

[[Page 79601]]

injuries and fatalities to workers in close proximity to moving 
equipment and vehicles.


Statement of Need:


Mining is one of the most hazardous industries in this country. Miners 
continue to be injured or killed resulting from pinning, crushing, or 
striking accidents involving mobile equipment. Equipment is available 
to help prevent accidents that cause debilitating injuries and 
accidental death.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Promulgation of this standard is authorized by section 101(b) of the 
Federal Mine Safety and Health Act of 1977 as amended by the Mine 
Improvement and New Emergency Response Act of 2006.


Alternatives:


No reasonable alternatives to this regulation would be as comprehensive 
or as effective in eliminating hazards and preventing injuries.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


MSHA will develop a regulatory economic analysis to accompany the ETS.


Risks:


The lack of proximity detection systems on mobile equipment in 
underground mines contributes to a higher incidence of debilitating 
injuries and accidental deaths.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Request for Information 
    (RFI)                       02/01/10                     75 FR 5009
Comment Period Ended            04/02/10
Emergency Temporary 
    Standard                    03/00/11
Final Action                    12/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Patricia W. Silvey
Director, Office of Standards, Regulations, and Variances
Department of Labor
Mine Safety and Health Administration
1100 Wilson Boulevard
Room 2350
Arlington, VA 22209-3939
Phone: 202 693-9440
Fax: 202 693-9441
Email: silvey.patricia@dol.gov
RIN: 1219-AB65
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

                              -----------

                             PRERULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

107. INFECTIOUS DISEASES

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


5 USC 533; 29 USC 657 and 658; 29 USC 660; 29 USC 666; 29 USC 669; 29 
USC 673; . . .


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 1910


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


Employees in health care and other high-risk environments face long-
standing infectious diseases hazards such as tuberculosis (TB), 
varicella disease (chickenpox, shingles), and measles (rubeola), as 
well as new and emerging infectious disease threats, such as Severe 
Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and pandemic influenza. Health care 
workers and workers in related occupations or who are exposed in other 
high-risk environments are at increased risk of contracting TB, SARS, 
MRSA, and other infectious diseases that can be transmitted through a 
variety of exposure routes. OSHA is concerned about the ability of 
employees to continue to provide health care and other critical 
services without unreasonably jeopardizing their health.


OSHA is considering the need for a standard to ensure that employers 
establish a comprehensive infection control program and control 
measures to protect employees from infectious disease exposures to 
pathogens that can cause significant disease. Workplaces where such 
control measures might be necessary include: health care, emergency 
response, correctional facilities, homeless shelters, drug treatment 
programs, and other occupational settings where employees can be at 
increased risk of exposure to potentially infectious people. A standard 
could also apply to laboratories which handle materials that may be a 
source of pathogens, and to pathologists, coroners' offices, medical 
examiners, and mortuaries.


OSHA published an RFI on May 6, 2010, the comment period closed on 
August 4, 2010. OSHA is currently analyzing the comments submitted by 
stakeholders.


Statement of Need:


In 2007, the healthcare and social assistance sector as a whole had 
16.5 million employees. Healthcare workplaces can range from small 
private practices of physicians to hospitals that employ thousands of 
workers. In addition, healthcare is increasingly being provided in 
other settings such as nursing homes, free-standing surgical and 
outpatient centers, emergency care clinics, patients' homes, and 
prehospitalization emergency care settings. The Agency is particularly 
concerned by studies that indicate that transmission of infectious 
diseases to both patients and healthcare workers may be occurring as a 
result of incomplete adherence to recognized, but voluntary, infection 
control measures. Another concern is the movement of healthcare 
delivery from the traditional hospital setting, with its greater 
infrastructure and resources to effectively implement infection control 
measures, into more diverse and smaller workplace setting with less 
infrastructure and fewer resources, but with an expanding worker 
population.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the Secretary 
of Labor to set mandatory occupational safety and health standards to 
assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women 
(29 U.S.C. 651).


Alternatives:


The alternative to the proposed rulemaking would be to take no 
regulatory action.

[[Page 79602]]

Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The estimates of the costs and benefits are still under development.


Risks:


Analysis of risks is still under development.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Request for Information 
    (RFI)                       05/06/10                    75 FR 24835
RFI Comment Period End          08/04/10
Analyze Comments                12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Dorothy Dougherty
Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3718
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1950
Fax: 202 693-1678
Email: dougherty.dorothy@dol.gov
RIN: 1218-AC46
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--OSHA

<###DOC>

108. INJURY AND ILLNESS PREVENTION PROGRAM

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


29 USC 653; 29 USC 655(b); 29 USC 657


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


OSHA is developing a rule requiring employers to implement an Injury 
and Illness Prevention Program. It involves planning, implementing, 
evaluating, and improving processes and activities that protect 
employee safety and health. OSHA has substantial data on reductions in 
injuries and illnesses from employers who have implemented similar 
effective processes. The Agency currently has voluntary Safety and 
Health Program Management Guidelines (54 FR 3904-3916), published in 
1989. An injury and illness prevention rule would build on these 
guidelines as well as lessons learned from successful approaches and 
best practices under OSHA's Voluntary Protection Program Safety and 
Health Achievement Recognition Program and similar industry and 
international initiatives such as American National Standards 
Institute/American Industrial Hygiene Association Z10 and Occupational 
Health and Safety Assessment Series 18001. Twelve States have similar 
rules.


Statement of Need:


There are approximately 5,000 workplace fatalities and approximately 
3.5 million serious workplace injuries every year. There are also many 
workplace illnesses caused by exposure to common chemical, physical, 
and biological agents. OSHA believes that an injury and illness 
prevention program is a universal intervention that can be used in a 
wide spectrum of workplaces to dramatically reduce the number and 
severity of workplace injuries. Such programs have been shown to be 
effective in many workplaces in the United States and internationally.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the Secretary 
of Labor to set mandatory occupational safety and health standards to 
assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women 
(29 U.S.C. 651).


Alternatives:


The alternatives to this rulemaking would be to issue guidance, 
recognition programs, or allow for the states to develop individual 
regulations. OSHA has used voluntary approaches to address the need, 
including publishing Safety and Health Program Management Guidelines in 
1989. In addition, OSHA has two recognition programs, the Voluntary 
Protection Program (known as VPP), and the Safety and Health 
Achievement Recognition Program (known as SHARP). These programs 
recognize workplaces with effective safety and health programs. Several 
States have issued regulations that require employers to establish 
effective safety and health programs.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The scope of the proposed rulemaking and the costs and benefits are 
still under development for this regulatory action.


Risks:


A detailed risk analysis is underway.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Stakeholder Meetings            06/03/10
Initiate SBREFA                 06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Dorothy Dougherty
Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3718
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1950
Fax: 202 693-1678
Email: dougherty.dorothy@dol.gov
RIN: 1218-AC48
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--OSHA

<###DOC>

109.  BACKING OPERATIONS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


29 USC 655(b)


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None

[[Page 79603]]

Abstract:


NIOSH reports that half of the fatalities involving construction 
equipment occur while the equipment is backing. Backing accidents cause 
500 deaths and 15,000 injuries per year. Emerging technologies in the 
field of backing operations include after market devices, such as 
camera, radar, and sonar, to help monitor the presence of workers on 
foot in blind areas, and new monitoring technology, such as tag-based 
warning systems that use radio frequency (RFID) and magnetic field 
generators on equipment to detect electronic tags worn by workers.


Statement of Need:


A study by the Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries found that the 
most common primary sources of injury to be trucks (45%), road grading 
and surfacing machinery (15%), and cars (15%). That same study showed 
that of the 465 vehicle and equipment-related fatalities within work 
zones, 318 workers on foot were struck by a vehicle. Incidents 
involving backing vehicles were prominent among the worker-on-foot 
fatalities that occurred (51%). The primary injury sources of 
fatalities of workers on foot struck by a construction vehicle were 
trucks (61%) and construction machines (30%). OSHA believes that 
regulatory action is necessary to address risks associated with backup 
operations.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the Secretary 
of Labor to set mandatory occupational safety and health standards to 
assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women 
(29 U.S.C. 651).


Alternatives:


The alternative to the proposed rulemaking would be to take no 
regulatory action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The estimates of the costs and benefits are still under development.


Risks:


Analysis of risks is still under development.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
RFI                             05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


Agency Contact:
Ben Bare
Acting Director, Directorate of Construction
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3468
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-2020
Fax: 202 693-1689
RIN: 1218-AC52
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--OSHA

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

110. OCCUPATIONAL EXPOSURE TO CRYSTALLINE SILICA

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect State, local or tribal governments.


Legal Authority:


29 USC 655(b); 29 USC 657


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 1910; 29 CFR 1915; 29 CFR 1917; 29 CFR 1918; 29 CFR 1926


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


Crystalline silica is a significant component of the earth's crust, and 
many workers in a wide range of industries are exposed to it, usually 
in the form of respirable quartz or, less frequently, cristobalite. 
Chronic silicosis is a uniquely occupational disease resulting from 
exposure of employees over long periods of time (10 years or more). 
Exposure to high levels of respirable crystalline silica causes acute 
or accelerated forms of silicosis that are ultimately fatal. The 
current OSHA permissible exposure limit (PEL) for general industry is 
based on a formula proposed by the American Conference of Governmental 
Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) in 1968 (PEL=10mg/cubic meter/(% silica + 
2), as respirable dust). The current PEL for construction and shipyards 
(derived from ACGIH's 1970 Threshold Limit Value) is based on particle 
counting technology, which is considered obsolete. NIOSH and ACGIH 
recommend 50[micro]g/m3 and 25[micro]g/m3 exposure limits, 
respectively, for respirable crystalline silica.Both industry and 
worker groups have recognized that a comprehensive standard for 
crystalline silica is needed to provide for exposure monitoring, 
medical surveillance, and worker training. The American Society for 
Testing and Materials has published recommended standards for 
addressing the hazards of crystalline silica. The Building Construction 
Trades Department of the AFL-CIO has also developed a recommended 
comprehensive program standard. These standards include provisions for 
methods of compliance, exposure monitoring, training, and medical 
surveillance. OSHA is currently developing a NPRM.


Statement of Need:


Workers are exposed to crystalline silica dust in general industry, 
construction, and maritime industries. Industries that could be 
particularly affected by a standard for crystalline silica include: 
Foundries, industries that have abrasive blasting operations, paint 
manufacture, glass and concrete product manufacture, brick making, 
china and pottery manufacture, manufacture of plumbing fixtures, and 
many construction activities including highway repair, masonry, 
concrete work, rock drilling, and tuckpointing. The seriousness of the 
health hazards associated with silica exposure is demonstrated by the 
fatalities and disabling illnesses that continue to occur. In 2005, the 
most recent year for which data is available, silicosis was identified 
on 161 death certificates as an underlying or contributing cause of 
death. It is likely that many more cases have occurred where silicosis 
went undetected. In addition, the International Agency for Research on 
Cancer has designated crystalline silica as carcinogenic to humans, and 
the National Toxicology Program has concluded that respirable 
crystalline silica is a known human carcinogen. Exposure to crystalline 
silica has also been associated with an increased risk of developing 
tuberculosis and other nonmalignant respiratory diseases, as well as 
renal and autoimmune diseases. Exposure studies and OSHA enforcement 
data indicate that some

[[Page 79604]]

workers continue to be exposed to levels of crystalline silica far in 
excess of current exposure limits. Congress has included compensation 
of silicosis victims on Federal nuclear testing sites in the Energy 
Employees' Occupational Illness Compensation Program Act of 2000. There 
is a particular need for the Agency to modernize its exposure limits 
for construction and shipyard workers, and to address some specific 
issues that will need to be resolved to propose a comprehensive 
standard.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The legal basis for the proposed rule is a preliminary determination 
that workers are exposed to a significant risk of silicosis and other 
serious disease and that rulemaking is needed to substantially reduce 
the risk. In addition, the proposed rule will recognize that the PELs 
for construction and maritime are outdated and need to be revised to 
reflect current sampling and analytical technologies.


Alternatives:


Over the past several years, the Agency has attempted to address this 
problem through a variety of non-regulatory approaches, including 
initiation of a Special Emphasis Program on silica in October 1997, 
sponsorship with NIOSH and MSHA of the National Conference to Eliminate 
Silicosis, and dissemination of guidance information on its Web site.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The scope of the proposed rulemaking and estimates of the costs and 
benefits are still under development.


Risks:


A detailed risk analysis is under way.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Completed SBREFA Report         12/19/03
Initiated Peer Review of 
    Health Effects and 
    Risk Assessment             05/22/09
Completed Peer Review           01/24/10
NPRM                            04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Federal


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
Dorothy Dougherty
Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3718
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1950
Fax: 202 693-1678
Email: dougherty.dorothy@dol.gov
RIN: 1218-AB70
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--OSHA

<###DOC>

111. OCCUPATIONAL INJURY AND ILLNESS RECORDING AND REPORTING 
REQUIREMENTS--MODERNIZING OSHA'S REPORTING SYSTEM

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


29 USC 657


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 1904


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


OSHA is proposing changes to its reporting system for occupational 
injuries and illnesses. An updated and modernized reporting system 
would enable a more efficient and timely collection of data and would 
improve the accuracy and availability of the relevant records and 
statistics. This proposal involves modification to 29 CFR part 1904.41 
to expand OSHA's legal authority to collect and make available injury 
and illness information required under part 1904.


Statement of Need:


The collection of establishment specific injury and illness data in 
electronic format on a timely basis is needed to help OSHA, employers, 
employees, researchers, and the public more effectively prevent 
workplace injuries and illnesses, as well as support President Obama's 
Open Government Initiative to increase the ability of the public to 
easily find, download, and use the resulting dataset generated and held 
by the Federal Government.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the Secretary 
of Labor to develop and maintain an effective program of collection, 
compilation, and analysis of occupational safety and health statistics 
(29 U.S.C. 673).


Alternatives:


The alternative to the proposed rulemaking would be to take no 
regulatory action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The estimates of the costs and benefits are still under development.


Risks:


Analysis of risks is still under development.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Stakeholder Meetings            05/25/10                    75 FR 24505
Comment Period End              06/18/10
NPRM                            09/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Agency Contact:
Keith Goddard
Director, Directorate of Evaluation and Analysis
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3718
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-2400
Fax: 202 693-1641
Email: goddard.keith@dol.gov
RIN: 1218-AC49
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOL--OSHA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

112. HAZARD COMMUNICATION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.

[[Page 79605]]

Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


29 USC 655(b); 29 USC 657


CFR Citation:


29 CFR 1910.1200; 29 CFR 1915.1200; 29 CFR 1917.28; 29 CFR 1918.90; 29 
CFR 1926.59; 29 CFR 1928.21


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


OSHA's Hazard Communication Standard (HCS) requires chemical 
manufacturers and importers to evaluate the hazards of the chemicals 
they produce or import, and prepare labels and material safety data 
sheets to convey the hazards and associated protective measures to 
users of the chemicals. All employers with hazardous chemicals in their 
workplaces are required to have a hazard communication program, 
including labels on containers, material safety data sheets (MSDS), and 
training for employees. Within the United States (U.S.), there are 
other Federal agencies that also have requirements for classification 
and labeling of chemicals at different stages of the life cycle. 
Internationally, there are a number of countries that have developed 
similar laws that require information about chemicals to be prepared 
and transmitted to affected parties. These laws vary with regard to the 
scope of substances covered, definitions of hazards, the specificity of 
requirements (e.g., specification of a format for MSDSs), and the use 
of symbols and pictograms. The inconsistencies between the various laws 
are substantial enough that different labels and safety data sheets 
must often be used for the same product when it is marketed in 
different nations.


The diverse and sometimes conflicting national and international 
requirements can create confusion among those who seek to use hazard 
information. Labels and safety data sheets may include symbols and 
hazard statements that are unfamiliar to readers or not well 
understood. Containers may be labeled with such a large volume of 
information that important statements are not easily recognized. 
Development of multiple sets of labels and safety data sheets is a 
major compliance burden for chemical manufacturers, distributors, and 
transporters involved in international trade. Small businesses may have 
particular difficulty in coping with the complexities and costs 
involved.


As a result of this situation, and in recognition of the extensive 
international trade in chemicals, there has been a long-standing effort 
to harmonize these requirements and develop a system that can be used 
around the world. In 2003, the United Nations adopted the Globally 
Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS). 
Countries are now adopting the GHS into their national regulatory 
systems.


Statement of Need:


Multiple sets of requirements for labels and safety data sheets present 
a compliance burden for U.S. manufacturers, distributors, and 
transports involved in international trade. The comprehensibility of 
hazard information and worker safety will be enhanced as the GHS will: 
(1) Provide consistent information and definitions for hazardous 
chemicals; (2) address stakeholder concerns regarding the need for a 
standardized format for material safety data sheets; and (3) increase 
understanding by using standardized pictograms and harmonized hazard 
statements. The increase in comprehensibility and consistency will 
reduce confusion and thus improve worker safety and health. In 
addition, the adoption of the GHS would facilitate international trade 
in chemicals, reduce the burdens caused by having to comply with 
differing requirements for the same product, and allow companies that 
have not had the resources to deal with those burdens to be involved in 
international trade. This is particularly important for small producers 
who may be precluded currently from international trade because of the 
compliance resources required to address the extensive regulatory 
requirements for classification and labeling of chemicals. Thus every 
producer is likely to experience some benefits from domestic 
harmonization, in addition to the benefits that will accrue to 
producers involved in international trade. Several nations, including 
the European Union, have adopted the GHS with an implementation 
schedule through 2015. U.S. manufacturers, employers, and employees 
will be at a disadvantage in the event that our system of hazard 
communication is not in compliance with the GHS.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 authorizes the Secretary 
of Labor to set mandatory occupational safety and health standards to 
assure safe and healthful working conditions for working men and women 
(29 U.S.C. 651).


Alternatives:


The alternative to the proposed rulemaking would be to take no 
regulatory action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The estimates of the costs and benefits are still under development.


Risks:


OSHA's risk analysis is under development.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           09/12/06                    71 FR 53617
ANPRM Comment Period End        11/13/06
Complete Peer Review of 
    Economic Analysis           11/19/07
NPRM                            09/30/09                    74 FR 50279
NPRM Comment Period End         12/29/09
Hearing                         03/02/10
Hearing                         03/31/10
Post Hearing Comment 
    Period End                  06/01/10
Final Action                    08/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Government Levels Affected:


Local, State


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Agency Contact:
Dorothy Dougherty
Director, Directorate of Standards and Guidance
Department of Labor
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
200 Constitution Avenue NW.
FP Building
Room N-3718
Washington, DC 20210
Phone: 202 693-1950
Fax: 202 693-1678
Email: dougherty.dorothy@dol.gov
RIN: 1218-AC20
BILLING CODE 4510-23-S

[[Page 79606]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT)

<###DOC>

Introduction: Department Overview and Summary of Regulatory Priorities
The Department of Transportation (DOT) consists of 10 operating 
administrations and the Office of the Secretary, each of which has 
statutory responsibility for a wide range of regulations. DOT regulates 
safety in the aviation, motor carrier, railroad, motor vehicle, 
commercial space, and pipeline transportation areas. DOT also regulates 
aviation consumer and economic issues and provides financial assistance 
for programs involving highways, airports, public transportation, the 
maritime industry, railroads, and motor vehicle safety. The Department 
writes regulations to carry out a variety of statutes ranging from the 
Americans with Disabilities Act to the Uniform Time Act. Finally, DOT 
develops and implements a wide range of regulations that govern 
internal programs such as acquisitions and grants, access for the 
disabled, environmental protection, energy conservation, information 
technology, occupational safety and health, property asset management, 
seismic safety, and the use of aircraft and vehicles.
The Department's Regulatory Priorities
The Department's regulatory priorities respond to the challenges and 
opportunities we face. Our mission generally is as follows:
The national objectives of general welfare, economic growth and 
stability, and the security of the United States require the 
development of transportation policies and programs that contribute to 
providing fast, safe, efficient, and convenient transportation at the 
lowest cost consistent with those and other national objectives, 
including the efficient use and conservation of the resources of the 
United States.
To help us achieve our mission, we have five strategic goals:
 Safety: Improve public health and safety by reducing 
            transportation-related fatalities and injuries.
 State of Good Repair: Ensure the U.S. proactively maintains 
            its critical transportation infrastructure in a state of 
            good repair.
 Economic Competitiveness: Promote transportation policies and 
            investments that bring lasting and equitable economic 
            benefits to the Nation and its citizens.
 Livable Communities: Foster livable communities through place-
            based policies and investments that increase transportation 
            choices and access to transportation services.
 Environmental Sustainability: Advance environmentally 
            sustainable policies and investments that reduce carbon and 
            other harmful emissions from transportation sources.
In identifying our regulatory priorities for the next year, the 
Department considered its mission and goals and focused on a number of 
factors, including the following:
 The relative risk being addressed
 Requirements imposed by statute or other law
 Actions on the National Transportation Safety Board ``Most 
            Wanted List''
 The costs and benefits of the regulations
 The advantages to non-regulatory alternatives
 Opportunities for deregulatory action
 The enforceability of any rule, including the effect on agency 
            resources
This regulatory plan identifies the Department's regulatory 
priorities--the 17 pending rulemakings chosen from among the dozens of 
significant rulemakings listed in the Department's broader regulatory 
agenda that the Department believes will merit special attention in the 
upcoming year. The rules included in the regulatory plan embody the 
Department's focus on our strategic goals.
The regulatory plan reflects the Department's primary focus on safety--
a focus that extends across several modes of transportation. For 
example:
 The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will continue to 
            enhance the safety of our airways by its initiative to 
            revise rest requirements for commercial pilots.
 The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) has 
            initiated rulemakings to strengthen the requirements for 
            Electronic On-Board Recorders.
 Both FMCSA and the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) are 
            working to improve safety by regulating the maximum amount 
            of time commercial drivers and conductors can operate their 
            vehicles.
 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will 
            continue its rulemaking to reduce death and injury 
            resulting from incidents involving vehicle drivers backing 
            over people.
 FMCSA and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety 
            Administration (PHMSA) are focusing on important rulemaking 
            initiatives for address distracted driving from the use of 
            electronic devices.
We are taking actions to address other important issues. For example:
 NHTSA is engaged in two major rulemakings to address fuel 
            economy standards for both light and heavy duty vehicles.
 Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST) is focused on 
            its second major aviation consumer rulemaking designed to 
            further safeguard the interests of consumers flying the 
            Nation's skies.
Each of the rulemakings in the regulatory plan is described below in 
detail. In order to place them in context, we first review the 
Department's regulatory philosophy and our initiatives to educate and 
inform the public about transportation safety issues. We then describe 
the role in the Department's regulatory process and other important 
regulatory initiatives of OST and of each of the Department's 
components. Since each transportation ``mode'' within the Department 
has its own area of focus, we summarize the regulatory priorities of 
each mode and of OST, which supervises and coordinates modal 
initiatives and has its own regulatory responsibilities, such as 
consumer protection in the aviation industry.
The Department's Regulatory Philosophy and Initiatives
The Department has adopted a regulatory philosophy that applies to all 
its rulemaking activities. This philosophy is articulated as follows: 
DOT regulations must be clear, simple, timely, fair, reasonable, and 
necessary. They will be issued only after an appropriate opportunity 
for public comment, which must provide an equal chance for all affected 
interests to participate, and after appropriate consultation with other 
governmental entities. The Department will fully consider the comments 
received. It will assess the risks addressed by the rules and their 
costs and benefits, including the cumulative effects. The Department 
will consider appropriate alternatives, including nonregulatory 
approaches. It will also make every effort to ensure that regulation 
does not impose unreasonable mandates.

[[Page 79607]]

The Department stresses the importance of conducting high quality 
rulemakings in a timely manner and reducing the number of old 
rulemakings. To implement this, the Department has required the 
following actions: (1) Regular meetings of senior DOT officials to 
ensure effective policy leadership and timely decisions, (2) effective 
tracking and coordination of rulemakings, (3) regular reporting, (4) 
early briefings of interested officials, (5) regular training of staff, 
and (6) adequate allocations of resources. The Department has achieved 
significant success because of this effort. It allows the Department to 
use its resources more effectively and efficiently.
The Department's regulatory policies and procedures provide a 
comprehensive internal management and review process for new and 
existing regulations and ensure that the Secretary and other 
appropriate appointed officials review and concur in all significant 
DOT rules. DOT continually seeks to improve its regulatory process. A 
few examples include: The Department's development of regulatory 
process and related training courses for its employees; its use of an 
electronic, Internet-accessible docket that can also be used to submit 
comments electronically; a ``list serve'' that allows the public to 
sign up for e-mail notification when the Department issues a rulemaking 
document; creation of an electronic rulemaking tracking and 
coordination system; the use of direct final rulemaking; the use of 
regulatory negotiation; an expanded Internet page that provides 
important regulatory information, including ``effects'' reports and 
status reports (http://regs.dot.gov/); and the use of Internet blogs 
and other Web 2.0 technology to increase and enhance public 
participation in its rulemaking process.
In addition, the Department continues to engage in a wide variety of 
activities to help cement the partnerships between its agencies and its 
customers that will produce good results for transportation programs 
and safety. The Department's agencies also have established a number of 
continuing partnership mechanisms in the form of rulemaking advisory 
committees.
The Department is also actively engaged in the review of existing rules 
to determine whether they need to be revised or revoked. These reviews 
are in accordance with section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 
Executive Order 12866, and the Department's Regulatory Policies and 
Procedures. This includes determining whether the rules would be more 
understandable if they were written using a plain language approach. 
Appendix D to our regulatory agenda highlights our efforts in this 
area.
The Department will also continue its efforts to use advances in 
technology to improve its rulemaking management process. For example, 
the Department created an effective tracking system for significant 
rulemakings to ensure that either rules are completed in a timely 
manner or delays are identified and fixed. Through this tracking 
system, a monthly status report is generated. To make its efforts more 
transparent, the Department has made this report Internet accessible. 
By doing this, the Department is providing valuable information 
concerning our rulemaking activity and is providing information 
necessary for the public to evaluate the Department's progress in 
meeting its commitment to completing quality rulemakings in a timely 
manner.
The Department will continue to place great emphasis on the need to 
complete high quality rulemakings by involving senior departmental 
officials in regular meetings to resolve issues expeditiously.
Office of the Secretary of Transportation (OST)
The Office of the Secretary (OST) oversees the regulatory process for 
the Department. OST implements the Department's regulatory policies and 
procedures and is responsible for ensuring the involvement of top 
management in regulatory decisionmaking. Through the General Counsel's 
office, OST is also responsible for ensuring that the Department 
complies with the Administrative Procedure Act, Executive Order 12866 
(Regulatory Planning and Review), DOT's Regulatory Policies and 
Procedures, and other legal and policy requirements affecting 
rulemaking. Although OST's principal role concerns the review of the 
Department's significant rulemakings, this office has the lead role in 
the substance of projects concerning aviation economic rules and other 
rules that affect multiple elements of the Department.
OST provides guidance and training regarding compliance with regulatory 
requirements and process for use by personnel throughout the 
Department. OST also plays an instrumental role in the Department's 
efforts to improve our economic analyses; risk assessments; regulatory 
flexibility analyses; other related analyses; and data quality, 
including peer reviews.
OST also leads and coordinates the Department's response to the Office 
of Management and Budget's (OMB) intergovernmental review of other 
agencies' significant rulemaking documents and to Administration and 
congressional proposals that concern the regulatory process. The 
General Counsel's Office works closely with representatives of other 
agencies, OMB, the White House, and congressional staff to provide 
information on how various proposals would affect the ability of the 
Department to perform its safety, infrastructure, and other missions.
During fiscal year 2011, OST will continue to focus its efforts on 
enhancing airline passenger protections by requiring carriers to adopt 
various consumer service practices (2105-AD92).
OST will also continue its efforts to help coordinate the activities of 
several operating administrations that advance various departmental 
efforts that support the Administration's initiatives on promoting 
safety; stimulating the economy and creating jobs; sustaining and 
building America's transportation infrastructure; and improving 
livability for the people and communities who use transportation 
systems subject to the Department's policies.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
The Federal Aviation Administration is charged with safely and 
efficiently operating and maintaining the most complex aviation system 
in the world. It is guided by its Flight Plan goals: Increased Safety, 
Greater Capacity, International Leadership, and Organizational 
Excellence. It issues regulations to provide a safe and efficient 
global aviation system for civil aircraft, while being sensitive to not 
imposing undue regulatory burdens and costs on small businesses.
FAA Activities that may lead to rulemaking in fiscal year 2011 include:
 Promotion and expansion of safety information sharing efforts, 
            such as FAA-industry partnerships and data-driven safety 
            programs that prioritize and address risks before they lead 
            to accidents. Specifically, FAA will continue implementing 
            Commercial Aviation Safety Team projects related to 
            controlled flight into terrain, loss of control of an 
            aircraft, uncontained engine failures, runway incursions, 
            weather, pilot decisionmaking, and cabin safety. Some of 
            these projects may result in rulemaking and guidance 
            materials.

[[Page 79608]]

 Continuing to work cooperatively to harmonize the U.S. 
            aviation regulations with those of other countries, without 
            compromising rigorous safety standards. The differences 
            worldwide in certification standards, practice and 
            procedures, and operating rules must be identified and 
            minimized to reduce the regulatory burden on the 
            international aviation system. The differences between the 
            FAA regulations and the requirements of other nations 
            impose a heavy burden on U.S. aircraft manufacturers and 
            operators, some of which are small businesses. 
            Standardization should help the U.S. aerospace industry 
            remain internationally competitive. The FAA continues to 
            publish regulations based on recommendations of Aviation 
            Rulemaking Committees that are the result of cooperative 
            rulemaking between the U.S. and other countries.
 In addition to the regulatory priorities specified below, 
            additional priorities will come from the Airline Safety and 
            Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010, 
            signed by the President on August 1, 2010.
FAA top regulatory priorities for 2010 to 2011 include:
 Qualification, Service, and Use of Crewmembers and Aircraft 
            Dispatchers (2120-AJ00)
 Helicopter Air Ambulance and Commercial Helicopter Safety 
            Initiatives and Miscellaneous Amendments (2120-AJ53)
 Flight and Duty Time Limitations and Rest Requirements (2120-
            AJ58)
The Crewmember and Aircraft Dispatcher Training rulemaking would 
include proposals to:
 Reduce human error and improve performance among flight 
            crewmembers, flight attendants, and aircraft dispatchers;
 Enhance traditional training programs through the use of 
            flight simulation training devices for flight crewmembers; 
            and
 Include additional training in areas critical to safety.
The Air Ambulance and Commercial Helicopter rulemaking would include 
proposals to:
 Codify current agency guidance and address National 
            Transportation Safety Board recommendations;
 Provide certificate holders and pilots with tools and 
            procedures that will aid in reducing accidents;
 Require additional equipment on board helicopters or air 
            ambulances; and
 Amend all part 135 commercial helicopter operations 
            regulations to include equipment requirements, pilot 
            training, and alternate airport weather minimums.
The Flight and Duty Time Limitations and Rest Requirements rulemaking 
would include proposals to:
 Address fatigue mitigation and use existing fatigue science to 
            establish minimum rest periods, flight time limitations, 
            and duty period limits for flight crewmembers;
 Incorporate the use of Fatigue Risk Management Systems as an 
            option to provide operator flexibility for specific 
            operations; and
 Reduce human error attributed to fatigue among flight 
            crewmembers.
Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) carries out the Federal 
highway program in partnership with State and local agencies to meet 
the Nation's transportation needs. The FHWA's mission is to improve 
continually the quality and performance of our Nation's highway system 
and its intermodal connectors.
Consistent with this mission, the FHWA will continue:
 With ongoing regulatory initiatives in support of its surface 
            transportation programs;
 To implement legislation in the least burdensome and 
            restrictive way possible; and
 To pursue regulatory reform in areas where project development 
            can be streamlined or accelerated, duplicative requirements 
            can be consolidated, recordkeeping requirements can be 
            reduced or simplified, and the decisionmaking authority of 
            our State and local partners can be increased.
FHWA's top regulatory priority for the fiscal year is to address the 
remaining congressionally directed rulemaking (Real-Time System 
Management Information Program (2125-AF19)) resulting from the Safe, 
Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A 
Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). Additionally, the FHWA is in the process 
of reviewing all FHWA regulations to ensure that they are consistent 
with SAFETEA-LU and will update those regulations that are not 
consistent with this legislation.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)
The mission of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) 
is to reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving commercial 
trucks and buses. A strong regulatory program is a cornerstone of 
FMCSA's compliance and enforcement efforts to advance this safety 
mission. FMCSA develops new and more effective safety regulations based 
on three core priorities: Raising the bar for entry, maintaining high 
standards, and removing high-risk behavior. In addition to Agency-
directed regulations, FMCSA develops regulations mandated by Congress, 
such as the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, and Efficient Transportation 
Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). FMCSA regulations 
establish standards for motor carriers, drivers, vehicles, and State 
agencies receiving certain motor carrier safety grants and issuing 
commercial drivers' licenses.
FMCSA's regulatory plan for FY 2011 includes completion of a number of 
rulemakings that are high priorities for the Agency because they would 
have a positive impact on safety. Among the rulemakings included in the 
plan are: (1) Drivers Of Commercial Vehicles: Restricting The Use Of 
Cellular Phones (RIN 2126-AB29), (2) Hours of Service (RIN 2126-AB26), 
(3) Carrier Safety Fitness Determination (RIN 2126-AB11), (4) 
Electronic On-Board Recorders (EOBRs) and Hours of Service Supporting 
Documents (RIN 2126-AB20), and (5) National Registry of Certified 
Medical Examiners (RIN 2126-AA97).
Together these priority rules could help to substantially improve 
commercial motor vehicle (CMV) safety on our Nation's highways by 
improving FMCSA's ability to provide safety oversight of motor carriers 
and drivers. For example, the Drivers of Commercial Vehicles: 
Restricting the Use of Cellular Phones rulemaking (RIN 2126-AB29) would 
place restrictions on mobile phone usage while operating a CMV.
A major undertaking by FMCSA, which began in FY 2010, was to initiate a 
new rulemaking on Hours of Service (RIN 2126-AB26) as the result of a 
settlement agreement reached on October 26, 2009. Under terms of the 
settlement, FMCSA submitted a notice of proposed rulemaking to the 
Office of Management and Budget within 9

[[Page 79609]]

months, and must issue a final rule within 21 months of the settlement.
In FY 2011, FMCSA will continue its work on the Comprehensive Safety 
Analysis 2010 (CSA). The CSA initiative will improve the way FMCSA 
identifies and conducts carrier compliance and enforcement operations 
over the coming years. CSA's goal is to improve large truck and bus 
safety by assessing a wider range of safety performance data from a 
larger segment of the motor carrier industry through an array of 
progressive compliance interventions. FMCSA anticipates that the 
impacts of CSA and its associated rulemaking to put into place a new 
safety fitness standard will enable the Agency to prohibit ``unfit'' 
carriers from operating on the Nation's highways (the Carrier Safety 
Fitness Determination(RIN 2126-AB11)) and will contribute further to 
the Agency's overall goal of decreasing CMV-related fatalities and 
injuries.
In FY 2011, FMCSA plans to issue a proposed rule on Electronic On-Board 
Recorders and Hours of Service Supporting Documents (RIN 2126-AB20) to 
expand the number of carriers required to install and operate EOBRs and 
clarify the supporting document requirements beyond the population 
covered by the Agency's April 5, 2010, final rule.
Also in FY 2011, FMCSA plans to issue a final rule on the National 
Registry of Certified Medical Examiners (RIN 2126-AA97) to establish 
training and testing requirements for healthcare professionals who 
issue medical certificates to CMV drivers.
In order to manage its rulemaking agenda, FMCSA continues to involve 
senior agency leaders at the earliest stages of its rulemakings, and 
continues to refine its regulatory development process. The Agency also 
holds senior executives accountable for meeting deadlines for 
completing rulemakings.
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
The statutory responsibilities of the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration (NHTSA) relating to motor vehicles include reducing the 
number of, and mitigating the effects of, motor vehicle crashes and 
related fatalities and injuries; providing safety performance 
information to aid prospective purchasers of vehicles, child 
restraints, and tires; and improving automotive fuel efficiency. NHTSA 
pursues policies that encourage the development of non-regulatory 
approaches when feasible in meeting its statutory mandates. It issues 
new standards and regulations or amendments to existing standards and 
regulations when appropriate. It ensures that regulatory alternatives 
reflect a careful assessment of the problem and a comprehensive 
analysis of the benefits, costs, and other impacts associated with the 
proposed regulatory action. Finally, it considers alternatives 
consistent with the Administration's regulatory principles.
NHTSA continues to pursue the high priority vehicle safety issue of 
occupant protection in rollover events and will issue a final rule 
establishing performance standards to reduce complete and partial 
ejections of vehicle occupants from outboard seating positions in 
fiscal year 2011. NHTSA will continue to work towards a final rule to 
require the installation of lap/shoulder belts in newly manufactured 
motorcoaches in accordance with NHTSA's 2007 Motorcoach Safety Plan and 
DOT's 2009 Departmental Motorcoach Safety Action Plan. NHTSA also plans 
to publish a final rule on Rearview Visibility in 2011; this action 
will expand the required field of view to enable the driver of a motor 
vehicle to detect areas behind the motor vehicle to reduce death and 
injury resulting from backing incidents, particularly incidents 
involving small children and disabled persons.
NHTSA will continue its efforts to reduce domestic dependency on 
foreign oil in accordance with the Energy Independence and Security Act 
(EISA) of 2007 by publishing in conjunction with EPA a joint notice of 
proposed rulemaking setting, for the first time, the corporate average 
fuel economy (CAFE) standards for both medium- and heavy-duty trucks. 
NHTSA will also publish a notice of proposed rulemaking that would 
propose CAFE standards for light trucks and passenger cars for model 
years 2017 and beyond in fiscal year 2011.
In addition to numerous programs that focus on the safe performance of 
motor vehicles, the Agency is engaged in a variety of programs to 
improve driver and occupant behavior. These programs emphasize the 
human aspects of motor vehicle safety and recognize the important role 
of the States in this common pursuit. NHTSA has identified two high 
priority areas: Safety belt use and impaired driving. To address these 
issue areas, the Agency is focusing especially on three strategies--
conducting highly visible, well-publicized enforcement; supporting 
prosecutors who handle impaired driving cases and expanding the use of 
DWI/Drug Courts, which hold offenders accountable for receiving and 
completing treatment for alcohol abuse and dependency; and adopting 
alcohol screening and brief intervention by medical and health care 
professionals. Other behavioral efforts encourage child safety-seat 
use; combat excessive speed and aggressive driving; improve motorcycle, 
bicycle, and pedestrian safety; and provide consumer information to the 
public.
Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)
FRA's current regulatory program contains numerous mandates resulting 
from the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (RSIA08), as well as 
actions supporting the Department's High-Speed Rail Strategic Plan. 
RSIA08 alone has resulted in at least 18 rulemaking actions, which are 
competing for limited resources to meet statutory deadlines. FRA has 
prioritized these rulemakings according to the greatest effect on 
safety, as well as expressed congressional interest, and will work to 
complete as many rulemakings as possible prior to their statutory 
deadlines. Revised timelines for completion of unfinished regulations 
will be forwarded to Congress for consideration.
Through the Railroad Safety Advisory Committee (RSAC), FRA is working 
to complete RSIA08 actions that include developing requirements for 
train conductor certification, roadway worker protection, hours of 
service for employees of intercity and commuter passenger rail service, 
and training for railroad employees. Specifically, with regard to 
passenger hours of service, FRA is developing a notice of proposed 
rulemaking that would include proposals to establish hours of service 
limitations for train employees of commuter and intercity passenger 
railroads. The regulation will also address fatigue issues. RSAC-
supported actions that advance high-speed passenger rail include 
proposed revisions to the Track Safety Standards dealing with vehicle-
track interaction. FRA is also initiating a rulemaking related to the 
development of railroad risk reduction and system safety programs. This 
activity will be a multi-year effort due to the underlying statutory 
requirements that must be undertaken prior to the issuance of any final 
rule.
Federal Transit Administration (FTA)
FTA helps communities support public transportation by making grants of 
Federal funding for transit vehicles, construction of transit 
facilities, and

[[Page 79610]]

planning and operation of transit and other transit-related purposes. 
FTA regulatory activity focuses implementing the laws that apply to 
recipients' uses of federal funding and the terms and conditions of FTA 
grant awards. FTA policy regarding regulations is to:
 Provide maximum benefit to the mobility of the nation's 
            citizens and the connectivity of transportation 
            infrastructure;
 Provide maximum local discretion;
 Ensure the most productive use of limited Federal resources;
 Protect taxpayer investments in public transportation;
 Incorporate principles of sound management into the grant 
            management process.
As the needs for public transportation have changed over the years, the 
Federal transit programs have grown in number and complexity. FTA's 
regulatory priorities for the coming year will reflect the mandates of 
the Agency's authorization statute, including, most notable, the Major 
Capital Investments ``New Starts'' program and the State Safety 
Oversight (SSO) program. The New Starts program is the main source of 
discretionary Federal funding for construction of rapid rail, light 
rail, commuter rail, and other forms of transit infrastructure. The SSO 
program addressed the safety of rapid rail systems and other forms of 
rail transit not otherwise regulated by the Federal Railroad 
Administration. FTA also anticipates amending its regulations governing 
recipients' management of major capital projects and its Bus Testing 
rule.
Maritime Administration (MARAD)
The Maritime Administration (MARAD) administers Federal laws and 
programs to promote and strengthen the U.S. merchant marine to meet the 
economic and security needs of the Nation. To that end, MARAD's efforts 
are focused upon ensuring a strong American presence in the domestic 
and international trades and to expanding maritime opportunities for 
American businesses and workers.
MARAD's regulatory objectives and priorities reflect the Agency's 
responsibility for ensuring the availability of a U.S. merchant marine 
that can provide water transportation services for American shippers 
and consumers and, in times of war or national emergency, for the U.S. 
armed forces. Major program areas include: The Maritime Security 
Program; the Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement program; the 
National Defense Reserve Fleet and the Ready Reserve Force; the 
Maritime Guaranteed Loan financing program; the United States Merchant 
Marine Academy, and mariner education and training support programs; 
the Deepwater Port Licensing program; and monitoring and enforcement of 
U.S. cargo preference laws. In April 2010, the Secretary announced 
MARAD's newest program, the ``America's Marine Highway Program.''
MARAD's primary regulatory activities in fiscal year 2011 will be to 
assess existing cargo preference-related regulations, and to propose 
updates or new regulations where appropriate.
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)
The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has 
responsibility for rulemaking under two programs. Through the Associate 
Administrator for Hazardous Materials Safety, PHMSA administers 
regulatory programs under Federal hazardous materials transportation 
law and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended by the Oil 
Pollution Act of 1990. Through the Associate Administrator for Pipeline 
Safety, PHMSA administers regulatory programs under the Federal 
pipeline safety laws and the Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as 
amended by the Oil Pollution Act of 1990.
PHMSA will continue to work toward the elimination of deaths and 
injuries associated with the transportation of hazardous materials by 
all transportation modes, including pipeline. We will concentrate on 
the prevention of high-risk incidents identified through the evaluation 
of transportation incident data and findings of the National 
Transportation Safety Board. PHMSA will use all available agency tools 
to assess data; evaluate alternative safety strategies, including 
regulatory strategies as necessary and appropriate; target enforcement 
efforts; and enhance outreach, public education, and training to 
promote safety outcomes.
PHMSA will continue to focus its safety efforts on the resolution of 
highest priority risks. PHMSA will consider regulatory changes to 
combat the dangers practice of distracted driving. In an effort to 
understand and mitigate crashes associated with driver distraction, the 
DOT has been studying the distracted driving issue with respect to both 
behavioral and vehicle safety countermeasures. As part of the DOT's 
overall strategy to this problem, PHMSA plans to address the practice 
of text messaging (2137-AE63) and mobile phone (2137-AE65) use while 
driving. PHMSA's rules would apply to commercial motor vehicle drivers 
transporting a quantity of hazardous material requiring placarding 
under part 172 of the 49 CFR or any quantity of a material listed as a 
select agent or toxin in 42 CFR part 73.
PHMSA is also considering whether changes are needed to the regulations 
covering hazardous liquid onshore pipelines. In particular, PHMSA is 
considering whether it should extend regulation to certain pipelines 
currently exempt from regulation; whether other areas along a pipeline 
should either be identified for extra protection or be included as 
additional high consequence areas (HCAs) for Integrity Management (IM) 
protection; whether to establish and/or adopt standards and procedures 
for minimum lead detection requirements for all pipelines; whether to 
require the installation of emergency flow restricting devices (EFRDs) 
in certain areas; whether revised valve spacing requirements are needed 
on new construction or existing pipelines; whether repair timeframes 
should be specified for pipeline segments in areas outside the HCAs 
that are assessed as part of the IM; and whether to establish and/or 
adopt standards and procedures for improving the methods of preventing, 
detecting, assessing and remediating stress corrosion cracking (SCC) in 
hazardous liquid pipeline systems.
Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA)
The Research and Innovative Technology Administration (RITA) seeks to 
identify and facilitate solutions to the challenges and opportunities 
facing America's transportation system through:
 Coordination, facilitation, and review of the Department's 
            research and development programs and activities;
 Providing multi-modal expertise in transportation and 
            logistics research, analysis, strategic planning, systems 
            engineering and training;
 Advancement, and research and development, of innovative 
            technologies, including intelligent transportation systems;
 Comprehensive transportation statistics research, analysis, 
            and reporting;

[[Page 79611]]

 Managing education and training in transportation and national 
            transportation-related fields; and
 Managing the activities of the John A. Volpe National 
            Transportation Systems Center.
Through its Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Office of Airline 
Information, RITA collects, compiles, analyzes, and makes accessible 
information on the Nation's air transportation system. RITA collects 
airline financial, traffic, and operating statistical data, including 
on-time flight performance data that highlight long tarmac times and 
chronically late flights. This information gives the Government 
consistent and comprehensive economic and market data on airline 
operations that are used in supporting policy initiatives and 
administering the Department's mandated aviation responsibilities, 
including negotiating international bilateral aviation agreements, 
awarding international route authorities, performing airline and 
industry status evaluations, supporting air service to small 
communities, setting Alaskan Bush Mail rates, and meeting international 
treaty obligations.
Through its Intelligent Transportation Systems Joint Program Office 
(ITS/JPO), RITA conducts research and demonstrations and, as 
appropriate, may develop new regulations, in coordination with OST and 
other DOT operating administrations, to enable deployment of ITS 
research and technology results. This office collects and disseminates 
benefits and costs information resulting from ITS-related research 
along with direct measurement of the deployment of ITS nationwide. 
These efforts support market assessments for emerging market sectors 
that would be cost-prohibitive for industry to absorb alone. Such 
information is widely consumed by the community of stakeholders to 
determine their deployment needs.
The ITS Architecture and Standards Programs develop and maintain a 
National ITS Architecture; develop open, non-proprietary interface 
standards to facilitate rapid and economical adoption of nationally 
interoperable ITS technologies; and cooperate to harmonize ITS 
standards internationally. These standards are incorporated into DOT 
operating administration regulatory activities when appropriate.
Through its Volpe National Transportation Systems Center, RITA provides 
a comprehensive range of engineering expertise, and qualitative and 
quantitative assessment services, focused on applying, maintaining and 
increasing the technical body of knowledge to support DOT operating 
administration regulatory activities.
Through its Transportation Safety Institute, RITA designs, develops, 
conducts, and evaluates training and technical assistance programs in 
transportation safety and security to support DOT operating 
administration regulatory implementation and enforcement activities.
RITA's regulatory priorities are to assist OST and all DOT operating 
administrations in updating existing regulations by applying research, 
technology, and analytical results; to provide reliable information to 
transportation system decisionmakers; and to provide safety regulation 
implementation and enforcement training.

             QUANTIFIABLE COSTS AND BENEFITS OF RULEMAKINGS
                 ON THE 2010 to 2011 DOT REGULATORY PLAN
 
  (This chart does not account for non-quantifiable benefits, which are
                           often substantial.)
 


----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                                  Quantifiable     Quantifiable
Agency/RIN  Number                                                                   Costs           Benefits
                                    Title                         Stage         Discounted 2007  Discounted 2007
                                                                                  $ (Millions)     $ (Millions)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              OST
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2105-AD92   Enhancing Airline Passenger                      FR 05/11             87.6             26.0
                     Protections -- Part 2
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Total for OST                                            87.6             26.0
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              FAA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2120-AJ00   Qualification, Service, and Use of            SNPRM 01/11              TBD              TBD
                     Crewmembers and Aircraft Dispatchers
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2120-AJ53   Helicopter Air Ambulance and                     FR 10/11              TBD              TBD
                     Commercial Helicopter Safety
                     Initiatives and Miscellaneous
                     Amendments
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2120-AJ58   Flight and Duty Time Limitations and             FR 07/11              TBD              TBD
                     Rest Requirements
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                  Total for FAA                                              0                0
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
               FMCSA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2126-AA97   National Registry of Certified                    FR 4/11              587            1,034
                     Medical Examiners
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2126-AB11   Carrier Safety Fitness Determination            NPRM 4/11              TBD              TBD
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2126-AB20   Electronic On-Board Recorders and                     TBD              TBD              TBD
                     Hours of service Supporting
                     Documents
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2126-AB26   Hours of Service                               NPRM 11/10              TBD              TBD
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2126-AB29   Drivers of Commercial Vehicles:                NPRM 12/10              TBD              TBD
                     Restricting the Use Of Cellular
                     Phones
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

[[Page 79612]]

 
                                Total for FMCSA                                            587            1,034
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
            NHTSA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2127-AK23   Ejection Mitigation                              FR 01/11              583    1,741 - 2,188
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2127-AK43   Rearview Mirrors                               NPRM 12/10    1,861 - 1,933        619 - 778
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2127-AK74   Heavy Duty Truck Fuel Economy                  NPRM 12/10            7,753           49,340
                     Emissions
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2127-AK79   Passenger Car and Light Truck          Supplemental Notice             TBD              TBD
                     Corporate Average Fuel Economy           of Intent 12/10
                     Standards MYs 2017 and Beyond
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                Total for NHTSA                                 10,197 - 10,269  51,700 - 52,306
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              FRA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
           2130-AC15Hours of Service: Passenger Train              NPRM 05/11              TBD              TBD
                     Employees
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Total for FRA                                               0                0
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
              FTA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2132-AB02   Major Capital Investment Projects              NPRM 06/11              TBD              TBD
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 Total for FRA                                               0                0
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
            PHMSA
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2137-AE63   Hazardous Materials: Limiting the Use            FR 03/11              TBD              TBD
                     of Electronic Devices by Highway
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
        2137-AE65   Hazardous Materials: Limiting the Use          NPRM 01/11              TBD              TBD
                     of Mobile Telephones by Highway
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                Total for PHMSA                                              0                0
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                 TOTAL FOR DOT                                      10,871.6 -   52,760 - 53,366
                                                                                      10,943.6
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 Notes:
Costs and benefits discounted at a 7 percent discount rate over the lifetime of the model years involved (5
  model years for fuel economy, 1 model year for the other standards).
Costs and benefits of rulemakings may be forecast over varying periods. Although the forecast periods will be
  the same for any given rulemaking, comparisons between proceedings should be made cautiously.
The Department of Transportation generally assumes that there are economic benefits to avoiding a fatality of $6
  million. That economic value is included as part of the benefits estimates shown in the chart. As noted above,
  we have not included the non-quantifiable benefits.
 

_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Office of the Secretary (OST)

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

113. [rplus]ENHANCING AIRLINE PASSENGER PROTECTIONS--PART 2

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


49 USC 41712; 49 USC 40101; 49 USC 41702


CFR Citation:


Not Yet Determined


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would enhance airline passenger protections by 
addressing the following areas: (1) Contingency plans for lengthy 
tarmac delays; (2) reporting of tarmac delay data; (3) customer service 
plans; (4) notification to passengers of flight status changes; (5) 
inflation adjustment for denied boarding compensation; (6) alternative 
transportation for passengers on canceled flights; (7) opt-out 
provisions (e.g. travel insurance); (8) contract of carriage 
provisions; (9) baggage fees disclosure; and (10) full fare 
advertising.


Statement of Need:


This rule is needed to improve the air travel environment for 
passengers.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The Department has authority and responsibility under 49 U.S.C. 41712, 
in concert with 49 U.S.C. 40101 and 49 U.S.C. 41702, to protect 
consumers from unfair and deceptive practices and to ensure safe and 
adequate service in air transportation.


Alternatives:


The main alternative would be to take no regulatory action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


To be determined.


Risks:


The risk of not taking regulatory action would be a continuation of the 
dissatisfaction and frustration passengers have with the air travel 
environment.

[[Page 79613]]

Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            06/08/10                    75 FR 32318
Clarification to NPRM           06/25/10                    75 FR 36300
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    08/03/10                    75 FR 45562
NPRM Comment Period End         08/09/10
Extended Comment Period 
    End                         09/23/10
Final Rule                      04/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Blane A. Workie
Attorney
Department of Transportation
Office of the Secretary
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-9342
TDD Phone: 202 755-7687
Fax: 202 366-7152
Email: blane.workie@ost.dot.gov
Related RIN: Related to 2105-AD72
RIN: 2105-AD92
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

114. [rplus]QUALIFICATION, SERVICE, AND USE OF CREWMEMBERS AND AIRCRAFT 
DISPATCHERS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 106(g); 49 USC 40113; 49 USC 40119; 49 USC 44101; 49 USC 44701; 
49 USC 44702; 49 USC 44705; 49 USC 44709 to 44711; 49 USC 44713; 49 USC 
44716; 49 USC 44717; 49 USC 44722; 49 USC 44901; 49 USC 44903; 49 USC 
44904; 49 USC 44912; 49 USC 46105


CFR Citation:


14 CFR 119; 14 CFR 121; 14 CFR 135; 14 CFR 142; 14 CFR 65


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would amend the regulations for crewmember and 
dispatcher training programs in domestic, flag, and supplemental 
operations. The rulemaking would enhance traditional training programs 
by requiring the use of flight simulation training devices for flight 
crewmembers and including additional training requirements in areas 
that are critical to safety. The rulemaking would also reorganize and 
revise the qualification and training requirements. The changes are 
intended to contribute significantly to reducing aviation accidents.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking is part of the FAA's efforts to reduce fatal accidents 
in which human error was a major contributing cause. The changes would 
reduce human error and improve performance among flight crewmembers, 
flight attendants, and aircraft dispatchers. National Transportation 
Safety Board (NTSB) investigations identified several areas of 
inadequate training that were the probable cause of an accident. This 
rulemaking contains changes to address the causes and factors 
identified by the NTSB.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety is found in title 
49 of the United States Code. This rulemaking is promulgated under the 
authority described in 49 U.S.C. 44701(a)(5), which requires the 
Administrator to promulgate regulations and minimum standards for other 
practices, methods, and procedures necessary for safety in air commerce 
and national security.


Alternatives:


During the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) phase, the FAA did not 
find any significant alternatives in accordance with 5 U.S.C. section 
603(d). The FAA will again review alternatives at the final rule phase.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The FAA is developing the costs and benefits of this rulemaking.


Risks:


The FAA will review specific risks associated with this rulemaking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            01/12/09                     74 FR 1280
Notice of public meeting        03/12/09                    74 FR 10689
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    04/20/09                    74 FR 17910
NPRM Comment Period End         05/12/09
NPRM Extended Comment 
    Period End                  08/10/09
Supplemental NPRM               03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


For flight crewmember information contact Edward Cook, for flight 
attendant information contact Nancy Lauck Claussen, and for aircraft 
dispatcher information contact Leo Hollis, Air Carrier Training Branch 
(AFS-210), Flight Standards Service, Federal Aviation Administration, 
800 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20591; telephone (202) 267 
8166.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Nancy L Claussen
Department of Transportation
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20591
Phone: 202 267-8166
Email: nancy.claussen@faa.gov
RIN: 2120-AJ00
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FAA

<###DOC>

115. [rplus]AIR AMBULANCE AND COMMERCIAL HELICOPTER OPERATIONS; SAFETY 
INITIATIVES AND MISCELLANEOUS AMENDMENTS

Priority:


Other Significant

[[Page 79614]]

Legal Authority:


49 USC 106(g); 49 USC 1155; 49 USC 40101 to 40103; 49 USC 40120; 49 USC 
41706; 49 USC 41721; 49 USC 44101; 49 USC 44106; 49 USC 44111; 49 USC 
46306; 49 USC 46315; 49 USC 46316; 49 USC 46504; 49 USC 46506; 49 USC 
46507; 49 USC 47122; 49 USC 47508; 49 USC 47528 to 47531


CFR Citation:


14 CFR 1; 14 CFR 135


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would change equipment and operating requirements for 
commercial helicopter operations, including many specifically for 
helicopter air ambulance operations. This rulemaking is necessary to 
increase crew, passenger, and patient safety. The intended effect is to 
implement the National Transportation Safety Board, Aviation Rulemaking 
Committee, and internal FAA recommendations.


Statement of Need:


Since 2002, there has been an increase in fatal helicopter air 
ambulance accidents. The FAA has undertaken initiatives to address 
common factors that contribute to helicopter air ambulance accidents 
including issuing notices, handbook bulletins, operations 
specifications, and advisory circulars (ACs). This rule would codify 
many of those initiatives, as well as several NTSB and part 125/135 
Aviation Rulemaking Committee recommendations. In addition, the House 
of Representatives and the Senate introduced legislation in the 111th 
Congress and in earlier sessions that would address several of the 
issues raised in this rulemaking.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This rulemaking is promulgated under the authority described in 49 
U.S.C. 44701(a)(4), which requires the Administrator to promulgate 
regulations in the interest of safety for the maximum hours or periods 
of service of airmen and other employees of air carriers, and 49 U.S.C. 
44701(a)(5), which requires the Administrator to promulgate regulations 
and minimum standards for other practices, methods, and procedures 
necessary for safety in air commerce and national security.


Alternatives:


Alternative One: The alternative would change the compliance date from 
three years to four years after the effective rule date to install all 
required pieces of equipment. This would help small business owners 
cope with the burden of the expenses because they would be able to 
integrate these pieces of equipment over a longer period of time. This 
alternative is not preferred because it would delay safety 
enhancements.


Alternative Two: The alternative would exclude the HTAWS unit from this 
proposal. Although this alternative would reduce annualized costs to 
small air ambulance operators by approximately 12 percent and the ratio 
of annualized cost to annual revenue would decrease from a range of 
between 1.76 percent and 1.88 percent to a range of between 1.55 
percent and 1.65 percent, the annualized cost would still be 
significant for all 35 small air ambulance operators. The alternative 
not only does not eliminate the problem for a substantial number of 
small entities, but also would reduce safety. The HTAWS is an 
outstanding tool for situational awareness in all aspects of flying 
including day, night, and instrument meteorological conditions. 
Therefore the FAA believes that this equipment is a significant 
enhancement for safety.


Alternative Three: The alternative would increase the requirement of 
certificate holders from 10 to 15 helicopters or more that are engaged 
in helicopter air ambulance operations to have an Operations Control 
Center. The FAA believes that operators with 10 or more helicopters 
engaged in air ambulance operations would cover 66 percent of the total 
population of the air ambulance fleet in the U.S. The FAA believes that 
operators with 15 or more helicopters would decrease the coverage of 
the population to 50 percent. Furthermore, complexity issues arise and 
considerably increase with operators of more than 10 helicopters.


All alternatives above are not considered to be acceptable by the FAA 
in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 603(c).


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The FAA is currently developing costs and benefits.


Risks:


Helicopter air ambulance operations have several characteristics that 
make them unique, including that they are not limited to airport 
locations for picking up and dropping off patients, but may pick up a 
person at a roadside accident scene and transport him or her directly 
to a hospital. Helicopter air ambulance operations are also often time-
sensitive. A helicopter air ambulance flight may be crucial to getting 
a donor organ or critically ill or injured patient to a medical 
facility as efficiently as possible. Additionally, patients generally 
are not able to choose the helicopter air ambulance company that 
provides them with transportation. Despite the fact that there are 
unique aspects to helicopter air ambulance operations, they remain, at 
their core, air transportation. Accordingly, the FAA has the 
responsibility for ensuring the safety of these operations.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            10/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Lawrence Buehler
Flight Standards Service
Department of Transportation
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Avenue SW.
Washington, DC 20591
Phone: 202 267-8452
RIN: 2120-AJ53
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FAA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

116. [rplus]FLIGHT AND DUTY TIME LIMITATIONS AND REST REQUIREMENTS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 106(g); 49 USC 40113; 49 USC 40119; 49 USC 41706; 49 USC 44101;

[[Page 79615]]

49 USC 44701; 49 USC 44702; 49 USC 44705; 49 USC 44705; 49 USC 44709; 
49 USC 44710; 49 USC 44711; 49 USC 44712; 49 USC 44713; 49 USC 44715; 
49 USC 44716; 49 USC 44717; 49 USC 44722; 49 USC 45101; 49 USC 45102; 
49 USC 45103; 49 USC 45104; 49 USC 45105; 49 USC 46105


CFR Citation:


14 CFR 121; 14 CFR 135


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would establish one set of flight time limitations, 
duty period limits, and rest requirements for pilots. The rulemaking is 
necessary to ensure that pilots have the opportunity to obtain 
sufficient rest to perform their duties. The objective of the rule is 
to contribute to and to improve aviation safety. This rulemaking is 
related to the following: An NPRM (RIN 2120-AF63), and a Withdrawal 
(RIN 2120-AI93).


Statement of Need:


The FAA recognizes that the effects of pilot fatigue are universal, and 
the profiles of different types of operations are similar enough that 
the same fatigue mitigations should be applied across all types of 
operations.


In June 2009, the FAA established the Flight and Duty Time Limitations 
and Rest Requirements Aviation Rulemaking Committee (ARC) whose 
membership includes labor, industry, and FAA representatives. The ARC 
reviewed current approaches to mitigating fatigue and in September 2009 
made recommendations to the Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety 
on how to address this issue in FAA regulations.


The ARC considered:


* An approach to fatigue that consolidates and replaces existing 
regulatory requirements;


* Current fatigue science, data, and information;


* How current international standards address fatigue; and


* The use of Fatigue Risk Management Systems.


Based on ARC recommendations, the FAA is developing new regulations on 
crewmember flight, duty and rest requirements.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The FAA's authority to issue rules on aviation safety is found in title 
49 of the United States Code. This rulemaking is promulgated under the 
authority described in 49 U.S.C. 44701(a)(5), which requires the 
Administrator to promulgate regulations and minimum standards for other 
practices, methods, and procedures necessary for safety in air commerce 
and national security.


Alternatives:


The FAA is currently reviewing alternatives to rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The proposed rule is designated as ``significant regulatory action'' as 
designated in section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866. In addition, the 
proposed rule would have a significant economic impact on a substantial 
number of small entities. Quantifiable costs and benefits to be 
determined.


Risks:


The FAA will review specific risks associated with this rulemaking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/14/10                       75 55852
NPRM Comment Period End         11/15/10
Final Action                    07/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Nancy L Claussen
Department of Transportation
Federal Aviation Administration
800 Independence Avenue SW
Washington, DC 20591
Phone: 202 267-8166
Email: nancy.claussen@faa.gov
Related RIN: Related to 2120-AF63, Related to 2120-AI93
RIN: 2120-AJ58
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

117. [rplus]CARRIER SAFETY FITNESS DETERMINATION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


Undetermined


Legal Authority:


sec 4009 of TEA-21


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 385


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would revise 49 CFR part 385, Safety Fitness 
Procedures, in accordance with the Agency's major new initiative, 
Comprehensive Safety Analysis (CSA) 2010. CSA 2010 is a new operational 
model FMCSA plans to implement that is designed to help the Agency 
carry out its compliance and enforcement programs more efficiently and 
effectively. Currently, the safety fitness rating of a motor carrier is 
determined based on the results of a very labor intensive compliance 
review conducted at the carrier's place of business. Aside from 
roadside inspections and new audits, the compliance review is the 
Agency's primary intervention. Under CSA 2010, FMCSA would propose to 
implement a broader array of progressive interventions, some of which 
allow FMCSA to make contact with more carriers. Through this rulemaking 
FMCSA would establish safety fitness determinations based on safety 
data consisting of crashes, inspections, and violation history rather 
than the standard compliance review. This will enable the Agency to 
assess the safety performance of a greater segment of the motor carrier 
industry with the goal of further reducing large truck and bus crashes 
and fatalities.


Statement of Need:


Because of the time and expense associated with the on-site compliance 
review, only a small fraction of carriers (approximately 12,000) 
receive a safety fitness determination each year. Since the current 
safety fitness determination

[[Page 79616]]

process is based exclusively on the results of an on site compliance 
review, the great majority of carriers subject to FMCSA jurisdiction do 
not receive a timely determination of their safety fitness.


The proposed methodology for determining motor carrier safety fitness 
should correct the deficiencies of the current process. In correcting 
these deficiencies, FMCSA has made a concerted effort to develop a 
``transparent'' method for the SFD that would allow each motor carrier 
to understand fully how FMCSA established that carrier's specific SFD.


Summary of Legal Basis:


This rule is based primarily on the authority of 49 U.S.C. 31144, which 
directs the Secretary of Transportation to ``determine whether an owner 
or operator is fit to operate a commercial motor vehicle'' and to 
``maintain by regulation a procedure for determining the safety fitness 
of an owner or operator.'' This statute was first enacted as part of 
the Motor Carrier Safety Act of 1984, section 215, Public Law 98-554, 
98 Stat. 2844 (Oct. 30, 1984).


The proposed rule also relies on the provisions of 49 U.S.C. 31133, 
which gives the Secretary ``broad administrative powers to assist in 
the implementation'' of the provisions of the Motor Carrier Safety Act 
now found in chapter 311 of title 49, U.S.C. These powers include, 
among others, authority to conduct inspections and investigations, 
compile statistics, require production of records and property, 
prescribe recordkeeping and reporting requirements and to perform other 
acts considered appropriate. These powers are used to obtain the data 
used by the Safety Management System and by the proposed new 
methodology for safety fitness determinations.


Under 49 CFR 1.73(g), the Secretary has delegated the authority to 
carry out the functions in subchapters I, III, and IV of chapter 311, 
title 49, U.S.C., to the FMCSA Administrator. Sections 31133 and 31144 
are part of subchapter III of chapter 311.


Alternatives:


The Agency has been considering only two alternatives: The no-action 
alternative and the proposal.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Agency continues to estimate the crash-reduction benefit at this 
time.


Risks:


A risk of incorrectly identifying a compliant carrier as non-
compliant--and consequently subjecting the carrier to unnecessary 
expenses--has been analyzed and has been found to be negligible under 
the process being proposed.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


Undetermined


Federalism:


 Undetermined


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Jim Keenan
Office of Compliance and Enforcement
Department of Transportation
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-2096
Email: fmcsaregs@dot.gov
RIN: 2126-AB11
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FMCSA

<###DOC>

118. [rplus]ELECTRONIC ON-BOARD RECORDERS AND HOURS OF SERVICE 
SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major status under 5 USC 801 is undetermined.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 31502; 31136(a); PL 103.311; 49 USC 31137(a)


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 350; 49 CFR 385; 49 CFR 396; 49 CFR 395


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking will consider revisions to RIN 2126-AA89 (Electronic 
On-Board Recorders for Hours of Service Drivers) to expand the number 
of motor carriers required to install and operate Electronic On-Board 
Recorders (EOBRs). FMCSA is consolidating this follow-up to the EOBR 
rule with the Hours Of Service Of Drivers: Supporting Documents 
rulemaking for development of a single NPRM in RIN 2126-AB20. In 
addressing Hours of Service Supporting Documents requirements in this 
new rulemaking, FMCSA will consider reducing or eliminating current 
paperwork burdens associated with supporting documents in favor of 
expanded EOBR use. On January 15, 2010, the American Trucking 
Associations (ATA) filed a Petition for a Writ of Mandamus in the 
United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit 
(D.C. Cir. No. 10-1009). ATA petitioned the court to direct FMCSA to 
issue an NPRM on ``supporting documents'' in conformance with the 
requirements set forth in section 113 of mandamus on September 30, 
2010, ordering FMCSA to issue an NPRM on the supporting document 
regulations by December 30, 2010.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking proposes to improve safety on the Nation's highways by 
increasing compliance with the Hours of Service regulations. This 
rulemaking proposes to require the use of Electronic On-Board Recorders 
by an expanded population, and to clarify and specify requirements 
related to supporting documents.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 31502 of title 49 of the United States Code provides that 
``[t]he Secretary of Transportation may prescribe requirements for: (1) 
Qualifications and maximum hours of service of employees of, and safety 
of operation and equipment of, a motor carrier; and (2) qualifications 
and maximum hours of service of employees of, and standards of 
equipment of, a motor private carrier, when needed to promote safety of 
operation.'' This rulemaking addresses ``safety of operation and 
equipment'' of motor carriers and ``standards of equipment'' of motor 
private carriers and, as such, is well within the authority of 49 
U.S.C. 31502. The rulemaking would allow motor carriers to use EOBRs to 
document drivers? compliance with the HOS requirements; require some

[[Page 79617]]

noncompliant carriers to install, use, and maintain EOBRs for this 
purpose; and update existing performance standards for on-board 
recording devices.


Section 31136 of title 49 of the United States Code provides concurrent 
authority to regulate drivers, motor carriers, and vehicle equipment. 
It requires the Secretary to ``prescribe regulations on commercial 
motor vehicle safety. The regulations shall prescribe minimum safety 
standards for commercial motor vehicles. At a minimum, the regulations 
shall ensure that: (1) Commercial motor vehicles are maintained, 
equipped, loaded, and operated safely; (2) the responsibilities imposed 
on operators of commercial motor vehicles do not impair their ability 
to operate the vehicles safely; (3) the physical condition of operators 
of commercial motor vehicles is adequate to enable them to operate the 
vehicles safely; and (4) the operation of commercial motor vehicles 
does not have a deleterious effect on the physical condition of the 
operators.``


Alternatives:


To be determined.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FMCSA has not yet fully assessed the costs and benefits that might be 
associated with this activity.


Risks:


FMCSA has not yet fully assessed the risks that might be associated 
with this activity.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Small Entities Affected:


 Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


The Agency previously published an NPRM on this subject under RIN 2126-
AA76, ``Hours of Service of Drivers; Supporting Documents'' (63 FR 
19457, Apr. 20, 1998) and an SNPRM, ``Hours of Service of Drivers; 
Supporting Documents'' (69 FR 63997, Nov. 3, 2004). The Agency withdrew 
the SNPRM on October 25, 2007, 72 FR 60614. The previous proceeding can 
be found in docket No. FMCSA-1998-3706.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Deborah M. Freund
Senior Transportation Specialist
Department of Transportation
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-5370
Email: deborah.freund@dot.gov
Related RIN: Related to 2126-AA89, Related to 2126-AA76
RIN: 2126-AB20
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FMCSA

<###DOC>

119. [rplus]HOURS OF SERVICE

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 31502(b)


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 395


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Judicial, July 26, 2010, NPRM to OMB.


Final, Judicial, July 26, 2011.


Abstract:


On October 26, 2009, Public Citizen, et al. (Petitioners), and FMCSA 
entered into a settlement agreement under which Petitioners' petition 
for judicial review of the November 19, 2008, Final Rule on drivers' 
hours of service will be held in abeyance pending the publication of an 
NPRM reevaluating the Hours of Service rule.


Statement of Need:


The goals of this hours of service (HOS) proposed rule are to improve 
safety while ensuring that the requirements would not have an adverse 
impact on driver health. The proposed rule would also provide drivers 
with the flexibility to obtain rest when they need it and to adjust 
their schedules to account for unanticipated delays. FMCSA has also 
attempted to make the proposed rule easy to understand (though not at 
the expense of safety) and readily enforceable. The impact of HOS rules 
on commercial motor vehicle (CMV) safety is difficult to separate from 
the many other factors that affect heavy-vehicle crashes. The 2008 
FMCSA final rule on HOS noted that ``FMCSA has consistently been 
cautious about inferring causal relationships between the HOS 
requirements and trends in overall motor carrier safety. The Agency 
believes that the data show no decline in highway safety since the 
implementation of the 2003 rule and its re-adoption in the 2005 rule 
and the 2007 [interim final rule]'' (73 FR 69567, 69572, November 19, 
2008). While that statement remains correct, the total number of 
crashes, though declining, is still unacceptably high. FMCSA believes 
that the modified HOS rules proposed, coupled with the Agency's many 
other safety initiatives and assisted by the actions of an increasingly 
safety-conscious motor carrier industry, would result in continued 
reductions in fatigue-related CMV crashes and fatalities. Furthermore, 
this proposed rule is intended to protect drivers from the serious 
health problems associated with excessively long work hours, without 
significantly compromising their ability to do their jobs and earn a 
living.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The HOS regulations proposed today concern the ``maximum hours of 
service of employees of . . . a motor carrier'' (49 U.S.C. 31502(b)(1)) 
and the ``maximum hours of service of employees of . . . a motor 
private carrier'' (49 U.S.C. 31502(b)(2)). The adoption and enforcement 
of such rules were specifically authorized by the Motor Carrier Act of 
1935.


The 1984 Act provides concurrent authority to regulate drivers, motor 
carriers, and vehicle equipment. It requires the Secretary of 
Transportation to ``prescribe regulations on commercial motor vehicle 
safety. The regulations shall prescribe minimum safety standards for 
commercial motor vehicles.'' Although this authority is very broad, the 
1984 Act also includes specific requirements: ``At a minimum, the 
regulations shall ensure that (1) commercial motor vehicles are 
maintained, equipped, loaded, and operated safely; (2) the 
responsibilities imposed on operators of commercial motor vehicles do 
not impair their ability to operate the vehicles safely; (3) the 
physical condition of operators of commercial motor vehicles is 
adequate to enable them to operate the vehicles safely; and (4) the 
operation of commercial motor vehicles does not have a deleterious 
effect on the

[[Page 79618]]

physical condition of the operators`` (49 U.S.C. 31136(a)).


Alternatives:


FMCSA considered and assessed the consequences of four potential 
regulatory options. Option 1 is the no-action alternative, which would 
leave the existing rule in place. Options 2, 3, and 4 each would adopt 
several revisions to the rule.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Agency's analysis shows an annualized cost for the various 
alternatives of about $1 billion, with against annual safety and health 
benefits estimated to range from below $300 million to more than $2 
billion under different assumptions.


Risks:


The level of fatigue involvement in truck crashes is uncertain.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Organizations


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


Docket FMCSA-2004-19608


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Thomas Yager
Driver and Carrier Operations Division
Department of Transportation
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-4325
Email: tom.yager@dot.gov
RIN: 2126-AB26
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FMCSA

<###DOC>

120. [rplus]DRIVERS OF COMMERCIAL VEHICLES: RESTRICTING THE USE OF 
CELLULAR PHONES (SECTION 610 REVIEW)

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


PL 98-554


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 383; 49 CFR 384; 49 CFR 390; 49 CFR 391; 49 CFR 392


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would restrict the use of mobile telephones while 
operating a commercial motor vehicle. This rulemaking is in response to 
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration-sponsored studies that 
analyzed safety incidents and distracted drivers. This rulemaking 
addresses an item on the National Transportation Safety Board's ``Most 
Wanted List'' of safety recommendations.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking stems from the Distracted Driver Summit on September 30 
and October 1, 2009. This proposed rule would restrict the use of 
mobile telephones by all commercial motor vehicle drivers (CMV). This 
NPRM addresses the NTSB ``most wanted'' item associated with a 2004 
crash in Alexandria, Virginia. Furthermore, it would addresses recent 
crashes in Kentucky and North Carolina that according to media reports 
may have involved cell phone use. This rulemaking would improve safety 
on the Nation's highways by reducing the prevalence of distracted 
driving-related crashes, fatalities, and injuries involving drivers of 
CMVs.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Motor Carrier Safety Act of 1984 (1984 Act), 49 U.S.C. chapter 311, and 
the Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1986 (1986 Act), 49 U.S.C. 
chapter 313.


Alternatives:


FMCSA considered several options for restricting mobile telephone use 
and provided analysis of their safety and economic or environmental 
impacts.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The Agency is currently finalizing several options to provide an 
accurate statement of costs and benefits.


Risks:


FMCSA is continuing its analysis of the risk that might be associated 
with mobile telephone use.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Mike Huntley
Chief, Vehicle and Roadside Operations Division
Department of Transportation
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-9209
Email: michael.huntley@dot.gov
Related RIN: Related to 2126-AB22
RIN: 2126-AB29
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--FMCSA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

121. [rplus]NATIONAL REGISTRY OF CERTIFIED MEDICAL EXAMINERS

Priority:


Other Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


PL 109-59 (2005), sec 4116


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 390; 49 CFR 391


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, August 10, 2006.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would establish training, testing and certification

[[Page 79619]]

standards for medical examiners responsible for certifying that 
interstate commercial motor vehicle drivers meet established physical 
qualifications standards; provide a database (or National Registry) of 
medical examiners that meet the prescribed standards for use by motor 
carriers, drivers, and Federal and State enforcement personnel in 
determining whether a medical examiner is qualified to conduct 
examinations of interstate truck and bus drivers; and require medical 
examiners to transmit electronically to FMCSA the name of the driver 
and a numerical identifier for each driver that is examined. The 
rulemaking would also establish the process by which medical examiners 
that fail to meet or maintain the minimum standards would be removed 
from the National Registry. This action is in response to section 4116 
of Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient, Transportation Equity Act: A 
Legacy for Users.


Statement of Need:


In enacting the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation 
Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) [Pub. L. 109-59, August 10, 
2005], Congress recognized the need to improve the quality of the 
medical certification of drivers. SAFETEA-LU addresses the requirement 
for medical examiners to receive training in physical examination 
standards and be listed on a national registry of medical examiners as 
one step toward improving the quality of the commercial motor vehicle 
(CMV) driver physical examination process and the medical fitness of 
CMV drivers to operate CMVs. The safety impact will result from 
ensuring that medical examiners have completed training and testing to 
demonstrate that they fully understand FMCSA's physical qualifications 
standards and are capable of applying those standards consistently, 
thereby decreasing the likelihood that a medically unqualified driver 
may obtain a medical certificate.


Summary of Legal Basis:


The fundamental legal basis for the NRCME program comes from 49 U.S.C. 
31149(d), which requires FMCSA to establish and maintain a current 
national registry of medical examiners that are qualified to perform 
examinations of CMV drivers and to issue medical certificates. FMCSA is 
required to remove from the registry any medical examiner who fails to 
meet or maintain qualifications established by FMCSA. In addition, in 
developing its regulations, FMCSA must consider both the effect of 
driver health on the safety of CMV operations and the effect of such 
operations on driver health, 49 U.S.C. 31136(a).


Alternatives:


The rulemaking is statutorily mandated. Thus, the Agency must establish 
the National Registry.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


FMCSA continues to finalize the costs and benefits associated with this 
rulemaking based on comments received to the NPRM.


Risks:


FMCSA has not yet fully assessed the risks that might be associated 
with this activity.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/01/08                    73 FR 73129
NPRM Comment Period End         01/30/09
Final Rule                      07/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Dr. Mary D. Gunnels
Director, Office of Medical Programs
Department of Transportation
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-4001
Email: maggi.gunnels@dot.gov
RIN: 2126-AA97
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)

                              -----------

                             PRERULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

122.  [rplus]PASSENGER CAR AND LIGHT TRUCK CORPORATE AVERAGE 
FUEL ECONOMY STANDARDS MYS 2017 AND BEYOND

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 32902; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 533


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, April 1, 2015.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would establish Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) 
standards for light trucks and passenger cars for model years 2017 and 
beyond. This rulemaking would respond to requirements of the Energy 
Policy and Conservation Act, as amended by the Energy Independence and 
Security Act of 2007. The statute requires that CAFE standards be 
prescribed separately for passenger automobiles and non-passenger 
automobiles to achieve a combined fleet fuel economy of at least 35 mpg 
by model year 2020. For model years 2021 and beyond, the statute 
requires that the average fuel economy required to be attained by each 
fleet of passenger and non-passenger automobiles be the maximum 
feasible for each model year. The law requires the standards be set at 
least 18 months prior to the start of the model year. On May 21, 2010, 
President Obama issued a memorandum directing NHTSA and EPA to conduct 
a joint rulemaking (NHTSA regulating fuel economy and EPA regulating 
greenhouse gas emissions) and to issue a Notice of Intent to Issue a 
Proposed Rule (NOI) by September 30, 2010.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking would respond to requirements of the Energy Policy and 
Conservation Act, as amended by the Energy Independence and Security 
Act

[[Page 79620]]

of 2007. The statute requires that corporate average fuel economy 
standards be prescribed separately for passenger automobiles and non-
passenger automobiles to achieve a combined fleet fuel economy of at 
least 35 mpg by model year 2020. For model years 2021 and beyond, the 
statute requires that the average fuel economy required to be attained 
by each fleet of passenger and non-passenger automobiles be the maximum 
feasible for each model year. The law requires the standards be set at 
least 18 months prior to the start of the model year, and for model 
year 2017, standards must be set by April 1, 2015. On May 21, 2010, 
President Obama issued a memorandum directing NHTSA and EPA conduct 
joint rulemaking (NHTSA regulating fuel economy and EPA regulating 
greenhouse gas emissions) and to issue a Notice of Intent to Issue a 
Proposed Rule (NOI) by September 30, 2010.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 32910(d) of title 49 of the United States Code provides that 
the Administrator may prescribe regulations necessary to carry out his 
duties under Chapter 329, Automobile fuel economy.


Alternatives:


The agency is not pursuing any alternatives.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The costs and benefits of the potential changes addressed in this 
action have not yet been assessed.


Risks:


Depending upon how manufacturers use weight reduction to meet the fuel 
economy standards, there is a potential impact on motor vehicle safety. 
The 2010 NHTSA analysis shows that a 100 pound reduction in weight, 
while keeping footprint constant, decreases the fatality rate for light 
trucks over 3,870 lbs. but increases the fatality rate for light trucks 
less than 3,870 lbs. and for all passenger cars. An interagency team 
from DOT, EPA, and DOE are further examining this issue.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
Notice of Intent (NOI)          10/13/10                    75 FR 62739
NOI Comment Period End          10/31/10
Supplemental NOI                12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Undetermined


Government Levels Affected:


None


Federalism:


 This action may have federalism implications as defined in EO 13132.


Energy Effects:


 Statement of Energy Effects planned as required by Executive Order 
13211.


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
James Tamm
Fuel Economy Division Chief
Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 493-0515
Email: james.tamm@dot.gov
RIN: 2127-AK79
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--NHTSA

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

123. [rplus]FEDERAL MOTOR VEHICLE SAFETY STANDARD NO. 111, REARVIEW 
MIRRORS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 30111; 49 USC 30115; 49 USC 30117; 49 USC 30166; 49 USC 322; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 571.111


Legal Deadline:


Other, Statutory, February 28, 2009, Initiate rulemaking.


Final, Statutory, February 28, 2011.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would amend Federal Motor Vehicle Standard No. 111; 
Rearview Mirrors, to reflect requirements contained in the Cameron 
Gulbransen Kids Transportation Safety Act of 2007. The Act requires 
that NHTSA expand the required field of view to enable the driver of a 
motor vehicle to detect areas behind the motor vehicle to reduce death 
and injury resulting from backing incidents, particularly incidents 
involving small children and disabled persons. According to the Act, 
such a standard may be met by the provision of additional mirrors, 
sensors, cameras, or other technology to expand the driver's field of 
view.


Statement of Need:


Vehicles that are backing up have a potential to create a danger to 
pedestrians and pedicyclists. NHTSA estimates that backover crashes 
involving light vehicles account for an estimated 228 fatalities and 
17,000 injuries annually. In analyzing the data further, we found that 
many of these incidents occur off public roadways, in areas such as 
driveways and parking lots and that they involve parents (or 
caregivers) accidentally backing over children. We have also found that 
children represent approximately 44 percent of the fatalities, which we 
believe to be unique to this safety problem.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 3011, title 49, of the U.S.C., states that the Secretary shall 
prescribe motor vehicle safety standards.


Alternatives:


NHTSA is evaluating additional mirrors, sensors, cameras, and other 
technology to address this safety problem.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Costs: $723M to $2.4B


Benefit: Reduction of 95 to 112 fatalities and 7.072 to 8.374 injuries.


Risks:


The Agency believes there are no substantial risks to this rulemaking.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           03/04/09                     74 FR 9477
ANPRM Comment Period End        05/04/09
NPRM                            12/00/10

[[Page 79621]]

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
David Hines
General Engineer Office of Crash Avoidance Standards
Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-2720
Email: dhines@nhtsa.dot.gov
RIN: 2127-AK43
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--NHTSA

<###DOC>

124.  [rplus]COMMERCIAL MEDIUM- AND HEAVY-DUTY ON-HIGHWAY 
VEHICLES AND WORK TRUCK FUEL EFFICIENCY STANDARDS

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 32902; delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 523, 534, 535


Legal Deadline:


Other, Statutory, September 30, 2010, NHTSA Study.


Final, Statutory, September 28, 2012.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would respond to requirements of the Energy Policy and 
Conservation Act, as amended by the Energy Independence and Security 
Act of 2007. The statute requires that rulemaking begin with a report 
by the National Academy of Sciences evaluating medium-duty and heavy-
duty truck fuel economy standards. The National Academy provided 
Congress and the NHTSA with this report on March 18, 2010. EISA then 
requires that NHTSA complete a study that examines the fuel efficiency 
of commercial medium- and heavy-duty on-highway vehicles and work 
trucks and determines the appropriate test procedures and methodologies 
for measuring the fuel efficiency of such vehicles, the appropriate 
metric for measuring the fuel efficiency of such vehicles, the range of 
factors that affect the fuel efficiency of these vehicles, and other 
factors that could impact a program to improve the fuel efficiency of 
these vehicles.


The NHTSA study was issued October 25, 2010. Once that study is 
completed, NHTSA has 24 months to complete a final rule establishing a 
fuel efficiency program for these vehicles. The law provides that the 
new standards must provide at least 4 full model years of regulatory 
leadtime and 3 full model years of regulatory stability (i.e., the 
standards must remain in effect for 3 years before they may be 
amended). On May 21, 2010, President Obama issued a memorandum 
directing NHTSA and EPA conduct a joint rulemaking (NHTSA regulating 
fuel efficiency and EPA regulating greenhouse gas emissions), and to 
issue a final rule by July 30, 2011.


Statement of Need:


Setting fuel consumption standards for commercial medium-duty and 
heavy-duty on-highway vehicles and work trucks will reduce fuel 
consumption, and will thereby improve U.S. energy security by reducing 
dependence on foreign oil, which has been a national objective since 
the first oil price shocks in the 1970s. Net petroleum imports now 
account for approximately 60 percent of U.S. petroleum consumption. 
World crude oil production is highly concentrated, exacerbating the 
risks of supply disruptions and price shocks. Tight global oil markets 
led to prices over $100 per barrel in 2008, with gasoline reaching as 
high as $4 per gallon in many parts of the U.S., causing financial 
hardship for many families and businesses. The export of U.S. assets 
for oil imports continues to be an important component of the 
historically unprecedented U.S. trade deficits. Transportation accounts 
for about 72 percent of U.S. petroleum consumption. Medium-duty and 
heavy-duty vehicles account for about 17 percent of transportation oil 
use, which means that they alone account for about 12 percent of all 
U.S. oil consumption.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 102 of EISA, codified at 49 U.S.C. 32902(k), requires NHTSA to 
develop a regulatory system for the fuel economy of commercial medium-
duty and heavy-duty on-highway vehicles and work trucks in three steps: 
A study by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), a study by NHTSA, 
and a rulemaking to develop the regulations themselves. Specifically, 
49 U.S.C. 32902(k)(2) states that not later than 2 years after 
completion of the NHTSA study, DOT (by delegation, NHTSA), in 
consultation with the Department of Energy and EPA, shall develop a 
regulation to implement a ``commercial medium-duty and heavy-duty on-
highway vehicle and work truck fuel efficiency improvement program 
designed to achieve the maximum feasible improvement.''


Alternatives:


NHTSA is evaluating nine alternatives; (1) heavy-duty engines, only (2) 
Class 8 combination tractors and engines in Class 8 tractors, (3) 
heavy-duty engines and Class 7 and 8 tractors, (4) heavy-duty engines, 
Class 7 and 8 tractors, and Class 2b/3 pickup trucks and vans, (5) NPRM 
Preferred Alternative: heavy-duty engines, tractors, and Class 2b 
through 8 vehicles, (6) heavy-duty engines, tractors, Class 2b through 
8 vehicles and trailers, (7) heavy-duty engines, tractors, Class2b-8 
vehicles, and trailers plus advanced hybrid power-train technology for 
Class 2b through 8 vocational vehicles, pickups and vans, (8)15 percent 
less stringent that the NPRM Preferred Alternative, covering heavy-duty 
engines, tractors, and Class 2b through 8 vehicles, (9) 20 percent more 
stringent that the NPRM Preferred Alternative, covering heavy-duty 
engines, tractors, and Class 2b through 8 vehicles.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Estimated lifetime discounted costs, benefits and net benenfits for all 
heavy-duty vehicles projected to be sold in model years 2014-2018: 
Costs $7.7B, Benefits $49.0B, Net Benefits $41B (with 3% discount 
rate).


Risks:


The Agency believes there are no substantial risks to this rulemaking.

[[Page 79622]]

Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/00/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Energy Effects:


 Statement of Energy Effects planned as required by Executive Order 
13211.


International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
James Tamm
Fuel Economy Division Chief
Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 493-0515
Email: james.tamm@dot.gov
Related RIN: Related to 2060-AP61
RIN: 2127-AK74
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--NHTSA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

125. [rplus]EJECTION MITIGATION

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Unfunded Mandates:


This action may affect the private sector under PL 104-4.


Legal Authority:


49 USC 30111; 49 USC 30115; 49 USC 30117; 49 USC 30166; 49 USC 322; 
delegation of authority at 49 CFR 1.50


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 571.226


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, October 1, 2009.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would create a new Federal Motor Vehicle Safety 
Standard (FMVSS) for reducing occupant ejection. Currently, there are 
over 52,000 annual ejections in motor vehicle crashes, and over 10,000 
ejected fatalities per year. This rulemaking would propose new 
requirements for reducing occupant ejection through passenger vehicle 
side widows. The requirement would be an occupant containment 
requirement on the amount of allowable excursion through passenger 
vehicle side windows. The SAFETEA-LU legislation requires that: ``[t]he 
Secretary shall also initiate a rulemaking proceeding to establish 
performance standards to reduce complete and partial ejections of 
vehicle occupants from outboard seating positions. In formulating the 
standards the Secretary shall consider various ejection mitigation 
systems. The Secretary shall issue a final rule under this paragraph no 
later than October 1, 2009.'' The SAFETEA-LU legislation also requires 
that, if the Secretary determines that the subject final rule deadline 
cannot be met, the Secretary shall notify and provide an explanation to 
the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation and the 
House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce of the delay. 
On September 24, 2009, the Secretary provided appropriate notification 
to Congress that the final rule will be delayed until January 31, 2011.


Statement of Need:


The agency's annualized injury data from 1997 to 2008 show that there 
are 6,412 fatalities and 5,709 Maximum Abbreviated Injury Scale (MAIS) 
3+ non-fatal serious injuries for occupants partially and completely 
ejected through side windows in vehicles with a gross vehicle weight 
rating (GVWR) less than 4,536 kg (10,000 lbs.). Sixty-six percent of 
the fatalities and 77 percent of the serious injuries are from 
ejections that involve a rollover as part of the crash event.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 30111, title 49 of the U.S.C., states that the Secretary shall 
prescribe motor vehicle safety standards. Section 10301 of the Safe, 
Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy 
for Users (SAFETEA-LU) requires the Secretary to issue by October 1, 
2009, an ejection mitigation final rule reducing complete and partial 
ejections of occupants from outboard seating positions. The SAFETEA-LU 
legislation also requires that if the Secretary determines that the 
subject final rule deadline cannot be met, the Secretary shall notify 
and provide explanation to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, 
and Transportation and the House of Representatives Committee on Energy 
and Commerce of the delay. On September 24, 2009, the Secretary 
provided appropriate notification to Congress that the final rule will 
be delayed until January 31, 2011.


Alternatives:


The Agency is not pursuing any alternatives to reduce side window 
ejections of light vehicle occupants other than establishing FMVSS No. 
226.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The agency is reducing the population of partial and complete side 
window ejections through a series of rulemaking actions. These actions 
included adding a pole impact upgrade to FMVSS No. 214--Side Impact 
Protection (72 FR 51908) and promulgating FMVSS No. 126--Electronic 
Stability Control Systems (72 FR 17236). In the NPRM for this 
rulemaking, published December 2, 2009 (74 FR 63180), we estimated that 
promulgating FMVSS No. 226 will reduce the remaining population of 
ejection fatalities and serious injuries by the ranges of 390 to 402 
and 296 to 310, respectively. The cost per equivalent fatality at a 
seven percent discount rate was estimated to be $2.0 million.


Risks:


The Agency believes there are no substantial risks to this rulemaking 
and that only beneficial outcomes will occur as the industry moves to 
reduce side window ejections of light vehicle occupants.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            12/02/09                    74 FR 63180
NPRM Comment Period End         02/01/10
Final Action                    01/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses


Government Levels Affected:


None

[[Page 79623]]

International Impacts:


 This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and 
investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Louis Molino
Safety Standards Engineer
Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-1833
Fax: 202 366-4329
Email: louis.molino@dot.gov
RIN: 2127-AK23
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Federal Railroad Administration (FRA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

126. [rplus]HOURS OF SERVICE: PASSENGER TRAIN EMPLOYEES (RULEMAKING 
RESULTING FROM A SECTION 610 REVIEW)

Priority:


Economically Significant. Major under 5 USC 801.


Legal Authority:


PL 110-432, Div A, 122 Stat 4848 et seq; Rail Safety Improvement Act of 
2008; sec 108(e) (49 USC 21109)


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 242


Legal Deadline:


NPRM, Statutory, October 16, 2011.


Abstract:


This rulemaking would establish hours of service requirements for train 
employees engaged in commuter and intercity passenger rail transport.


Statement of Need:


Required by the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008, Public Law 110-
432.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Required by the Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008, Public Law 110-
432.


Alternatives:


The Rail Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (RSIA of 2008) provides, in 
section 108 (d), that if FRA does not have a final regulation in effect 
by October 16, 2011, the hours of service requirements for train 
employees found in 49 U.S.C. section 21103, as revised by section 108 
(b) of the RSIA of 2008, will go into effect for train employees of 
commuter and intercity passenger railroads.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


To be determined.


Risks:


The regulation is expected to reduce the risk of accidents and injuries 
caused or contributed to by fatigue, because it will require commuter 
and intercity passenger railroads to analyze the risk for fatigue in 
the schedules worked by their train employees, and will require that 
they mitigate the fatigue risks in those schedules demonstrating a risk 
for a level of fatigue at which safety may be compromised.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            05/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


Yes


Small Entities Affected:


Businesses, Governmental Jurisdictions


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Kathryn Shelton
Trial Attorney
Department of Transportation
Federal Railroad Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 493-6063
Email: kathryn.shelton@fra.dot.gov
RIN: 2130-AC15
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Federal Transit Administration (FTA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

127.  [rplus]MAJOR CAPITAL INVESTMENT PROJECTS

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


49 USC 5309


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 611


Legal Deadline:


Final, Statutory, April 7, 2006.


Abstract:


This rulemaking, mandated specifically by 49 U.S.C. 5309(e)(9), is 
intended to make changes to the regulations that govern the New Starts 
discretionary funding program authorized by 49 U.S.C. 5309. FTA's 
initial rulemaking on this subject (RIN 2132-AA81), initiated to meet 
the statutory deadline, was terminated as the result of subsequent 
congressional action prohibiting FTA from issuing a rule.


Statement of Need:


Section 3011 of the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient 
Transportation Equity Act--A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU) made a 
number of changes to 49 U.S.C. 5309, which authorizes the Federal 
Transit Administration's (FTA) fixed guideway capital investment grant 
program known as ``New Starts.'' SAFETEA-LU also added created a new 
category of major capital investments that have a total project cost of 
less than $250 million and that are seeking less than $75 million in 
section 5309 major capital investment funds. This rulemaking proposes 
to implement those changes and a number of other changes that FTA 
believes will improve the process for evaluating major capital 
investment projects.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Section 5309, title 49, of the United States Code requires the 
Secretary to promulgate regulations for the evaluation and selection of 
major capital investment projects that have a total project cost of 
less than $250 million, and that are seeking less than $75 million in 
section 5309 major capital investment funds.

[[Page 79624]]

Alternatives:


This rulemaking is mandated by section 3011 of SAFETEA-LU, so there is 
not an alternative to pursuing rulemaking. Within the rulemaking 
process, FTA has already issued and has received comments on an Advance 
Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that will inform the various options FTA 
might pursue in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


The single largest change in the New Starts program is the creation in 
SAFETEA-LU of the ``Small Starts'' program. Over the first 10 years of 
the Small Starts program, the cumulative impact of transfer from New 
Starts to Small Starts will likely be $1.9 Billion, with a Net Present 
Value of $1.311 Billion using a discount rate of 7 percent. This effect 
is difficult to characterize in terms of cost or benefit, as it simply 
represents a ``transfer of a transfer'' from one governmental entity to 
another.


Risks:


The proposed rulemaking provides a framework for a discretionary grant 
program; it does not propose to regulate other than for applicants for 
Federal funds. As such, the rulemaking poses no risks for the regulated 
community, other than for the risks inherent in pursuing Federal funds 
that might not be awarded if a project fails to satisfy the eligibility 
and evaluation criteria in the proposed regulatory structure.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
ANPRM                           06/03/10                    75 FR 31383
ANPRM Comment Period End        08/02/10
NPRM                            06/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Christopher VanWyk
Attorney Advisor
Department of Transportation
Federal Transit Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE.
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-1733
Email: christopher.vanwyk@fta.dot.gov
RIN: 2132-AB02
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)

                              -----------

                          PROPOSED RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

128.  [rplus]HAZARDOUS MATERIALS: LIMITING THE USE OF MOBILE 
TELEPHONES BY HIGHWAY

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Not Yet Determined


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 177


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would limit the use of mobile telephones by drivers 
during the operation of a motor vehicle containing a quantity of 
hazardous materials requiring placarding under part 172 of the 49 CFR 
or any quantity of a select agent or toxin listed in 42 CFR part 73. 
Additionally, in accordance with requirements proposed by the Federal 
Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), motor carriers would be 
prohibited from requiring or allowing drivers of covered motor vehicles 
to engage in the use of mobile telephones while driving. This 
rulemaking would improve health and safety on the Nation's highways by 
reducing the prevalence of distracted driving-related crashes, 
fatalities, and injuries involving drivers of commercial motor 
vehicles.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking expands on mobile phone limitations under development 
by FMCSA that would limit the use of mobile phones by drivers 
transporting a quantity of hazardous materials requiring placarding 
under part 172 of the 49 CFR or any quantity of a material listed as a 
select agent or toxin in 42 CFR part 73 in intrastate commerce. FMCSA's 
authority over motor carriers of these materials is limited to 
transportation in interstate commerce. The safety benefits associated 
with limiting the distractions caused by mobile phones are equally 
applicable to drivers transporting covered hazardous materials via 
intrastate as they are to interstate commerce. The use of a mobile 
phone while driving constitutes a safety risk to the motor vehicle 
driver, other motorists, and bystanders.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Federal hazardous materials transportation law (Federal hazmat law; 49 
U.S.C. 5101 et seq.)


Alternatives:


PHMSA will consider two alternatives:


1. Amend the HMR to expand the scope of the FMCSA NPRM to include those 
intrastate motor carriers and drivers that transport a quantity of 
hazardous materials requiring placarding under part 172 of the 49 CFR 
or any quantity of a material listed as a select agent or toxin in 42 
CFR part 73; or


2. Take no action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


Not yet calculated. However, the population of motor carriers affected 
will be less than 1,500. PHMSA expects costs to be minimal when 
compared to the risks of distracted driving.


Risks:


Risk to the public and regulated community from distracted driving-
related crashes, fatalities, and injuries involving drivers of 
commercial motor vehicles transporting covered hazardous materials in 
intrastate commerce.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/17/10                    75 FR 56972
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended                    11/16/10                    75 FR 66912
NPRM Comment Period End         11/16/10
NPRM Comment Period 
    Extended End                12/03/10

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No

[[Page 79625]]

Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


HM-256A


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Ben Supko
Transportation Regulations Specialist
Department of Transportation
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-8553
Email: ben.supko@dot.gov
RIN: 2137-AE65
_______________________________________________________________________

<###DOC>

DOT--PHMSA

                              -----------

                            FINAL RULE STAGE

                              -----------


<###DOC>

129.  [rplus]HAZARDOUS MATERIALS: LIMITING THE USE OF 
ELECTRONIC DEVICES BY HIGHWAY

Priority:


Other Significant


Legal Authority:


Not Yet Determined


CFR Citation:


49 CFR 177


Legal Deadline:


None


Abstract:


This rulemaking would restrict the use of electronic devices by drivers 
during the operation of a motor vehicle containing a quantity of 
hazardous materials requiring placarding under part 172 of the 49 CFR 
or any quantity of a material listed as a select agent or toxin in 42 
CFR part 73. Additionally, in accordance with requirements proposed by 
the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) motor carriers 
are prohibited from requiring or allowing drivers of covered motor 
vehicles to engage in texting while driving. This rulemaking would 
improve health and safety on the Nation's highways by reducing the 
prevalence of distracted driving-related crashes, fatalities, and 
injuries involving drivers of commercial motor vehicles.


Statement of Need:


This rulemaking expands on the limitations on wireless communications 
proposed by FMCSA's April 1, 2010, NPRM to the transportation of a 
quantity of hazardous materials requiring placarding under part 172 of 
the 49 CFR or any quantity of a material listed as a select agent or 
toxin in 42 CFR part 73 in intrastate commerce. FMCSA's authority over 
motor carriers of these materials is limited to transportation in 
interstate commerce. The safety benefits associated with limiting the 
distractions caused by electronic devices are equally applicable to 
drivers transporting covered hazardous materials via intrastate as they 
are to interstate commerce. The use of an electronic device while 
driving constitutes a safety risk to the motor vehicle driver, other 
motorists, and bystanders.


Summary of Legal Basis:


Federal hazardous materials transportation law (Federal hazmat law; 49 
U.S.C. 5101 et seq.)


Alternatives:


PHMSA considered two alternatives:


1. Amend the HMR to expand the scope of the FMCSA NPRM to include those 
intrastate motor carriers and drivers that transport a quantity of 
hazardous materials requiring placarding under part 172 of the 49 CFR 
or any quantity of a material listed as a select agent or toxin in 42 
CFR part 73; or


2. Take no action.


Anticipated Cost and Benefits:


PHMSA estimates that this proposed rule will cost $5,227 annually. 
Additionally, PHMSA has not identified a significant increase in crash 
risk associated with drivers? strategies for complying with this 
proposed rule. As indicated in the regulatory evaluation, a crash 
resulting in property damage only (PDO) averages approximately $17,000 
in damages. Consequently, the texting restriction would have to 
eliminate just one PDO crash every 3.25 years for the benefits of this 
proposed rule to exceed the costs.


Risks:


Risk to the public and regulated community from distracted driving-
related crashes, fatalities, and injuries involving drivers of 
commercial motor vehicles transporting covered hazardous materials in 
intrastate commerce.


Timetable:
_______________________________________________________________________
Action                            Date                        FR Cite

_______________________________________________________________________
NPRM                            09/27/10                    75 FR 59197
NPRM Comment Period End         10/27/10
Final Rule                      03/00/11

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required:


No


Small Entities Affected:


No


Government Levels Affected:


None


Additional Information:


HM-256


URL For More Information:
www.regulations.gov

URL For Public Comments:
www.regulations.gov

Agency Contact:
Ben Supko
Transportation Regulations Specialist
Department of Transportation
Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
Phone: 202 366-8553
Email: ben.supko@dot.gov
RIN: 2137-AE63
BILLING CODE 4910-9X-S

[[Page 79626]]


<###DOC>

DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY (TREAS)

<###DOC>

Statement of Regulatory Priorities
The primary missions of the Department of the Treasury are:
To promote prosperous and stable American and world economies, 
including promoting domestic economic growth and maintaining our 
Nation's leadership in global economic issues, supervising national 
banks and thrift institutions, and helping to bring residents of 
distressed communities into the economic mainstream.
To manage the Government's finances by protecting the revenue and 
collecting the correct amount of revenue under the Internal Revenue 
Code, overseeing customs revenue functions, financing the Federal 
Government and managing its fiscal operations, and producing our 
Nation's coins and currency.
To safeguard the U.S. and international financial systems from those 
who would use these systems for illegal purposes or to compromise U.S. 
national security interests, while keeping them free and open to 
legitimate users.
Consistent with these missions, most regulations of the Department and 
its constituent bureaus are promulgated to interpret and implement the 
laws as enacted by the Congress and signed by the President. It is the 
policy of the Department to comply with requirements to issue a notice 
of proposed rulemaking and carefully consider public comments before 
adopting a final rule. Also, in particular cases, the Department 
invites interested parties to submit views on rulemaking projects while 
a proposed rule is being developed.
In response to the events of September 11, 2001, the President signed 
the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001 into law on October 26, 2001. Since then, 
the Department has accorded the highest priority to developing and 
issuing regulations to implement the provisions in this historic 
legislation that target money laundering and terrorist financing. These 
efforts, which will continue during the coming year, are reflected in 
the regulatory priorities of the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network 
(FinCEN).
On July 21, 2010, the President signed the Dodd-Frank Wall Street 
Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Pub. L. 111-203, 124 Stat. 1376). 
Over the next several months, the Department will continue implementing 
the Act, including promulgating regulations required under the Act.
To the extent permitted by law, it is the policy of the Department to 
adhere to the regulatory philosophy and principles set forth in 
Executive Order 12866 and to develop regulations that maximize 
aggregate net benefits to society while minimizing the economic and 
paperwork burdens imposed on persons and businesses subject to those 
regulations.
Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
On October 3, 2008, the President signed the Emergency Economic 
Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA) (Pub. L. 110-334). Section 101(a) of 
EESA authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury to establish a Troubled 
Asset Relief Program (TARP) to ``purchase, and to make and fund 
commitments to purchase, troubled assets from any financial institution 
on such terms and conditions as are determined by the Secretary and in 
accordance with this Act and policies and procedures developed and 
published by the Secretary.''
EESA provides authority to issue regulations and guidance to implement 
the program. Regulations and guidance required by EESA include 
conflicts of interest, executive compensation, and tax guidance. The 
Secretary is also charged with establishing a program that will 
guarantee principal of, and interest on, troubled assets originated or 
issued prior to March 14, 2008.
The Department has issued guidance and regulations and will continue to 
provide program information through the next year. Regulatory actions 
taken to date include the following:
Executive compensation. In October 2008, the Department issued an 
interim final rule that set forth executive compensation guidelines for 
the TARP Capital Purchase Program (73 FR 62205). Related tax guidance 
on executive compensation was announced in IRS Notice 2008-94. In 
addition, among other EESA tax guidance, the IRS issued interim 
guidance regarding loss corporation and ownership changes in Notice 
2008-100, providing that any shares of stock owned by the Department of 
the Treasury under the Capital Purchase Program will not be considered 
to cause Treasury's ownership in such corporation to increase. On June 
15, 2009, the Department issued a revised interim final rule that sets 
forth executive compensation guidelines for all TARP program 
participants (74 FR 28394), implementing amendments to the executive 
compensation provisions of EESA made by the American Recovery and 
Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Pub. L.111-5). Public comments on the revised 
interim final rule regarding executive compensation were due by August 
14, 2009, and will be considered as part of the process of issuing a 
final rule on this subject.
Insurance program for trouble assets. On October 14, 2008, the 
Department released a request for public input on an insurance program 
for troubled assets.
Conflicts of interest. On January 21, 2009, the Department issued an 
interim final rule providing guidance on conflicts of interest pursuant 
to section 108 of EESA (74 FR 3431). Comments on the interim final 
rule, which were due by March 23, 2009, will be considered as part of 
the process of issuing a final rule.
The Department will continue implementing the EESA authorities to 
restore capital flows to the consumers and businesses that form the 
core of the Nation's economy.
Terrorism Risk Insurance Program Office
The Terrorism Risk Insurance Act of 2002 (TRIA) was signed into law on 
November 26, 2002. The law, which was enacted as a consequence of the 
events of September 11, 2001, established a temporary Federal 
reinsurance program under which the Federal Government shares the risk 
of losses associated with certain types of terrorist acts with 
commercial property and casualty insurers. The Act, originally 
scheduled to expire on December 31, 2005, was extended to December 31, 
2007, by the Terrorism Risk Insurance Extension Act of 2005 (TRIEA). 
The Act has since been extended to December 31, 2014, by the Terrorism 
Risk Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2007 (TRIPRA).
The Office of the Assistant Secretary for Financial Institutions is 
responsible for developing and promulgating regulations implementing 
TRIA, as extended and amended by TRIEA and TRIPRA. The Terrorism Risk 
Insurance Program Office, which is part of the Office of the Assistant 
Secretary for Financial Institutions, is responsible for operational 
implementation of TRIA. The purposes of this legislation are to address 
market disruptions, ensure the continued widespread availability and 
affordability of commercial property and casualty insurance for 
terrorism risk, and to allow for a transition period for the private 
markets to stabilize and build capacity while preserving State 
insurance regulation and consumer protections.

[[Page 79627]]

Over the past year, the Office of the Assistant Secretary has issued 
proposed rules implementing changes authorized by TRIA as revised by 
TRIPRA. The following regulations should be published by December 31, 
2010:
Final Netting. This rule would establish procedures by which, after the 
Secretary has determined that claims for the Federal share of insured 
losses arising from a particular Program Year shall be considered 
final, a final netting of payments to or from insurers will be 
accomplished.
Affiliates. This rule would make changes to the definition of 
``affiliate'' to conform to the language in the statute
Civil Penalty. This rule establishes procedures by which the Secretary 
may assess civil penalties against any insurer that the Secretary 
determines, on the record after an opportunity for a hearing has 
violated provisions of the Act.
Renewals. Certain claims rules will be published for renewal without 
change.
During 2011, Treasury will continue the ongoing work of implementing 
TRIA and carrying out revised operations as a result of the TRIPRA 
related regulation changes.
Customs Revenue Functions
On November 25, 2002, the President signed the Homeland Security Act of 
2002 (the Act), establishing the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). 
The Act transferred the United States Customs Service from the 
Department of the Treasury to the DHS, where it is was known as the 
Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Effective March 31, 
2007, DHS changed the name of the Bureau of Customs and Border 
Protection to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) pursuant to 
section 872(a)(2) of the Act (6 U.S.C. 452(a)(2)) in a Federal Register 
notice (72 FR 20131) published on April 23, 2007. Notwithstanding the 
transfer of the Customs Service to DHS, the Act provides that the 
Secretary of the Treasury retains sole legal authority over the customs 
revenue functions. The Act also authorizes the Secretary of the 
Treasury to delegate any of the retained authority over customs revenue 
functions to the Secretary of Homeland Security. By Treasury Department 
Order No. 100-16, the Secretary of the Treasury delegated to the 
Secretary of Homeland Security authority to prescribe regulations 
pertaining to the customs revenue functions subject to certain 
exceptions. This order further provided that the Secretary of the 
Treasury retained the sole authority to approve any such regulations 
concerning import quotas or trade bans, user fees, marking, labeling, 
copyright and trademark enforcement, and the completion of entry or 
substance of entry summary including duty assessment and collection, 
classification, valuation, application of the U.S. Harmonized 
Schedules, eligibility or requirements for preferential trade programs 
and the establishment of recordkeeping requirements relating thereto.
During the past fiscal year, among the Treasury-retained CBP customs-
revenue function regulations issued was a final rule that adopted the 
interim amendments updating the regulatory provisions relating to the 
requirement under the United States-Bahrain FTA (BFTA) that a good must 
be ``imported directly'' from Bahrain to the United States or from the 
United States to Bahrain to qualify for preferential tariff treatment. 
The change removed the condition that a good passing through the 
territory of an intermediate country must remain under the control of 
the customs authority of the intermediate country. CBP also finalized 
the interim regulations, which implemented the preferential tariff 
treatment provisions of the Dominican Republic-Central America-United 
States Free Trade Agreement (also known as ``CAFTA-DR'') Implementation 
Act.
In addition, during the past fiscal year, CBP finalized the interim 
amendments of the regulations to implement certain provisions of the 
Tom Lantos Block Burmese JADE (Junta's Anti-Democratic Efforts) Act of 
2008 (Pub. L. 110-286) (the ``JADE Act'') and Presidential Proclamation 
8294 of September 26, 2008, which includes new Additional U.S. Note 4 
to chapter 71 of the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States 
(``HTSUS''). The final amendments prohibit the importation of Burmese-
covered articles of jadeite, rubies, and articles of jewelry containing 
jadeite or rubies, and sets forth restrictions for the importation of 
non-Burmese covered articles of jadeite, rubies, and articles of 
jewelry containing jadeite or rubies.
As a result of the Softwood Lumber Act of 2008, CBP finalized the 
interim regulations to parts 12 and 163 of the regulations that 
prescribed special entry requirements as well as an importer 
declaration program applicable to certain softwood lumber (SWL) and SWL 
products exported from any country into the United States. The 
regulations also implemented the Act's recordkeeping requirements 
applicable to certain imports of SWL home packages and kits that are 
subject to declaration requirements but that are not subject to the SWL 
importer declaration program.
This past fiscal year, consistent with the practice of continuing to 
move forward with Customs Modernization provisions of the North 
American Free Trade Implementation Act to improve its regulatory 
procedures, Treasury and CBP finalized its proposal to establish the 
remote location filing program, which had been a test program under the 
Customs Modernization Act for many years. This rule permits remote 
location filing of electronic entries of merchandise from a location 
other than where the merchandise arrives. In addition, Treasury and CBP 
also finalized a proposal which was published in August 2008 regarding 
the electronic payment and refund of quarterly harbor maintenance fees. 
The rule provides the trade with expanded electronic payment/refund 
options for quarterly harbor maintenance fees and it modernizes and 
enhances CBP's port use fee collection efforts.
During fiscal year 2011, CBP and Treasury plan to give priority to the 
following regulatory matters involving the customs revenue functions 
not delegated to DHS:
Trade Act of 2002's preferential trade benefit provisions. Treasury and 
CBP plan to finalize several interim regulations that implement the 
trade benefit provisions of the Trade Act of 2002 including the 
Caribbean Basin Economic Recovery Act and the African Growth and 
Opportunity Act.
Free Trade Agreements. Treasury and CBP also plan to finalize interim 
regulations this fiscal year to implement the preferential tariff 
treatment provisions of the United States-Singapore Free Trade 
Agreement Implementation Act. Treasury and CBP also expect to issue 
interim regulations implementing the United States-Australia Free Trade 
Agreement Implementation Act, the United States-Oman Free Trade 
Agreement Implementation Act, and the United States-Peru Free Trade 
Agreement Implementation Act.
Country of Origin of Textile and Apparel Products. Treasury and CBP 
also plan to publish a final rule adopting an interim rule that was 
published on the Country of Origin of Textile and Apparel Products, 
which implemented the changes brought about, in part, by the expiration 
of the Agreement on Textile and Clothing and

[[Page 79628]]

the resulting elimination of quotas on the entry of textile and apparel 
products from World Trade Organizations (WTO) members.
North American Free Trade Agreement Country of Origin Rules. Based upon 
the public comments received on its July 25, 2008