[Federal Register Volume 76, Number 39 (Monday, February 28, 2011)]
[Notices]
[Pages 10874-10875]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2011-4357]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

[Docket No. APHIS-2008-0119]


Implementation of Revised Lacey Act Provisions

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Notice and request for information.

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SUMMARY: The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 amended the 
Lacey Act to expand its protections to a broader range of plant 
species, extended its reach to encompass products, including timber, 
that derive from illegally harvested plants, and require that importers 
submit a declaration at the time of importation for certain plants and 
plant products. The Act also requires us to review the implementation 
of the declaration requirements, and to provide public notice and 
opportunity for comment while conducting the review. The purpose of 
this notice is to inform the public that we are conducting the required 
review and to request comments on the implementation of the declaration 
requirements.

DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive on or before April 
14, 2011.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://
www.regulations.gov/fdmspublic/component/

[[Page 10875]]

main?main=DocketDetail&d=APHIS-2008-0119 to submit or view comments and 
to view supporting and related materials available electronically.
     Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Please send one copy of 
your comment to Docket No. APHIS-2008-0119, Regulatory Analysis and 
Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, 
Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state that your comment refers to 
Docket No. APHIS-2008-0119.
    Reading Room: You may read any comments that we receive on this 
docket in our reading room. The reading room is located in room 1141 of 
the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue, SW., 
Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., 
Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to 
help you, please call (202) 690-2817 before coming.
    Other Information: Additional information about APHIS and its 
programs is available on the Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mr. George Balady, Staff Officer, 
Quarantine Policy Analysis and Support, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road 
Unit 60, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231; (301) 734-8295.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    The Lacey Act (16 U.S.C. 3371 et seq.), first enacted in 1900 and 
significantly amended in 1981, is the United States' oldest wildlife 
protection statute. The Act combats trafficking in ``illegal'' 
wildlife, fish, and plants. The Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 
2008, effective May 22, 2008, amended the Lacey Act by expanding its 
protections to a broader range of plants and plant products (Section 
8204, Prevention of Illegal Logging Practices). As amended, the Lacey 
Act now makes it unlawful to import, export, transport, sell, receive, 
acquire, or purchase in interstate or foreign commerce any plant, with 
some limited exceptions, taken in violation of any Federal, State, 
Tribal, or foreign law that protects plants. The Lacey Act also now 
makes it unlawful to make or submit any false record, account, or label 
for, or any false identification of, any plant covered by the Act.
    In addition, Section 3 of the Lacey Act, as amended, made it 
unlawful, beginning December 15, 2008, to import certain plants and 
plant products without an import declaration. The declaration must 
contain, among other things, the scientific name of the plant, value of 
the importation, quantity of the plant, and name of the country from 
which the plant was harvested. Enforcement of the declaration 
requirement is currently being phased in.\1\
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    \1\ Copies of notices published in the Federal Register on the 
implementation of the Lacey Act (including directions on how to view 
comments received on them), guidance on complying with the Lacey 
Act, and information about how to register for stakeholder 
notification can be found on the APHIS Web site at http://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant_health/lacey_act/index.shtml.
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    The Act also requires us to review the implementation of the 
declaration requirements, including the effect of certain exclusions 
from those requirements, and to provide public notice and opportunity 
for comment while conducting the review. Furthermore, after we have 
completed the review, we are required to submit a report to Congress 
detailing the results of that review. Specifically, the Act directs us 
to include in the report the following items:

    (A) An evaluation of--
     (i) The effectiveness of each type of information required 
under paragraphs (1) through (2) in assisting enforcement of this 
section; and
     (ii) The potential to harmonize each requirement imposed by 
paragraphs (1) and (2) with other applicable import regulations in 
existence as of the date of the report;
    (B) Recommendations for such legislation as the Secretary 
determines to be appropriate to assist in the identification of 
plants that are imported into the United States in violation of this 
section; and
    (C) An analysis of the effect of subsection (a) and this 
subsection on--
     (i) The cost of legal plant imports; and
     (ii) The extent and methodology of illegal logging practices 
and trafficking.

    Therefore, we are soliciting information from the public about the 
implementation of the import declaration requirements. Interested 
parties are invited to submit comments on the issues stated above and 
other pertinent issues related to the implementation and enforcement of 
the 2008 Lacey Act amendments. Information received in response to this 
notice will be taken into account and included with our analysis of the 
implementation of the declaration requirements in the report made to 
Congress. Comments submitted in response to previous notices regarding 
implementation of the amended Lacey Act will also be taken into account 
and do not need to be resubmitted.

    Authority:  16 U.S.C. 3371 et seq.; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 
371.2(d).

    Done in Washington, DC, this 23rd day of February 2011.
Kevin Shea,
Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. 2011-4357 Filed 2-25-11; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 3410-34-P