[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 50 (Wednesday, March 14, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 14951-14952]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-5957]



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Rules and Regulations
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Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 50 / Wednesday, March 14, 2012 / 
Rules and Regulations

[[Page 14951]]



DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

Office of the Secretary

7 CFR Part 2

RIN 0503-AA51


Delegations of Authority

AGENCY: Office of the Secretary, USDA.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: This document revises the delegations of authority from the 
Secretary of Agriculture and general officers of the Department of 
Agriculture (USDA) to reflect changes in the coordination of 
Departmental remote sensing activities. These responsibilities are 
consolidated within the Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) 
to create a single focal point for coordinating all Departmental 
geospatial activities.

DATES: Effective March 14, 2012.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Stephen Lowe, (202) 720-0880.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

Office of the Chief Economist--Remote Sensing Activities

    The Chief Economist, by delegation from the Secretary of 
Agriculture (Secretary), is responsible for coordinating USDA remote 
sensing activities (7 CFR 2.29(a)(6)). Within the Office of the Chief 
Economist (OCE), these responsibilities are further delegated to the 
Chairman of the World Agricultural Outlook Board (WAOB) (7 CFR 
2.72(a)(4)). WAOB coordinates USDA remote sensing activities by 
chairing the Remote Sensing Coordination Committee (RSCC). RSCC 
convenes remote sensing experts from multiple USDA agencies to promote 
information sharing and to help ensure the most efficient and cost 
effective use of remote sensing data and technologies within USDA.

Office of the Chief Information Officer--Geospatial Activities

    The Assistant Secretary for Administration, by delegation from the 
Secretary, is responsible for coordinating USDA geospatial activities 
(7 CFR 2.24(a)(2)(xi)(G)). Within the Departmental Management 
organization, this responsibility is further delegated to the Chief 
Information Officer (7 CFR 2.89(a)(11)(vii)). The Office of the Chief 
Information Officer (OCIO) coordinates Departmental geospatial 
activities by chairing the Enterprise Geospatial Management Office 
(EGMO) Agency Advisory Council. A part of the responsibility of OCIO is 
to fulfill the leadership requirements of the Senior Agency Official 
for Geospatial Information (SAOGI) and ensure the effective 
implementation in the Department of OMB Circular No. A-16, 
``Coordination of Geographic Information and Related Spatial Data 
Activities.'' This Circular defines geospatial data as: information 
that identifies the geographic location and characteristics of natural 
or constructed features and boundaries on the Earth. This information 
may be derived from, among other things, remote sensing, mapping, and 
surveying technologies.

Consolidating Coordination Activities

    Departmental remote sensing and geospatial activities are currently 
managed by two separate USDA Offices, OCE and OCIO. Because remote 
sensing data are a subset of geospatial information, the authorities 
related to remote sensing that are delegated to the Chairman of the 
WAOB, through the Chief Economist, are being transferred to the Chief 
Information Officer, through the Assistant Secretary for 
Administration. This transfer of authority benefits USDA by providing a 
single focal point for coordinating all Departmental geospatial 
activities, remote sensing or other, and enabling spatial data and 
service lifecycle performance management to increase the value of USDA 
assets for stakeholders.
    This transfer of authority does not alter existing delegations of 
authority to the Administrator of the Foreign Agricultural Service 
relating to the support of remote sensing activities and research with 
satellite imagery (7 CFR 2.43(a)(45)), or to the Under Secretary for 
Research, Education, and Economics and the Administrator of the 
Agricultural Research Service, relating to the conduct of remote-
sensing and other weather-related research (7 CFR 2.21(a)(1)(lxix)); 7 
CFR 2.65(a)(33)).

Classification

    This rule relates to internal agency management. Accordingly, 
pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553, notice of proposed rulemaking and opportunity 
for comment are not required, and this rule may be made effective less 
than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. This rule also 
is exempt from the provisions of Executive Order 12866. This action is 
not a rule as defined by the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as amended by 
the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (5 
U.S.C. 601 et seq.), or the Congressional Review Act (5 U.S.C. 801 et 
seq.), and thus is exempt from the provisions of those Acts. This rule 
contains no information collection or recordkeeping requirements under 
the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 2

    Authority delegations (Government agencies).

    For the reasons discussed in the preamble, the Department of 
Agriculture amends 7 CFR part 2 as follows:

PART 2--DELEGATIONS OF AUTHORITY BY THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE 
AND GENERAL OFFICERS OF THE DEPARTMENT

0
1. The authority for part 2 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 7 U.S.C. 6912(a)(1); 5 U.S.C. 301; Reorganization 
Plan No. 2 of 1953, 3 CFR 1949-1953 Comp., p. 1024.

0
2. Amend Sec.  2.24 by redesignating paragraphs (a)(2)(xi)(H) through 
(a)(2)(xi)(P) as paragraphs (a)(2)(xi)(I) through (a)(2)(xi)(Q) and 
adding new paragraph (a)(2)(xi)(H), to read as follows:


Sec.  2.24  Assistant Secretary for Administration.

    (a) * * *
    (2) * * *
    (xi) * * *
    (H) Provide technical assistance, coordination, and guidance to 
Department agencies in planning, developing, and carrying out satellite 
remote sensing activities to ensure full

[[Page 14952]]

consideration and evaluation of advanced technology; designate the 
Executive Secretary for the Remote Sensing Coordination Committee; and 
coordinate administrative, management, and budget information relating 
to the Department's remote sensing activities including:
    (1) Inter- and intra-agency meetings, correspondence, and records;
    (2) Budget and management tracking systems; and
    (3) Inter-agency contacts and technology transfer.
* * * * *


Sec.  2.29  [Amended]

0
3. Amend Sec.  2.29 by removing and reserving paragraph (a)(6).


Sec.  2.72  [Amended]

0
4. Amend Sec.  2.72 by removing and reserving paragraph (a)(4).
0
5. Amend Sec.  2.89 by redesignating paragraphs (a)(11)(viii) through 
(a)(11)(xvi) as paragraphs (a)(11)(ix) through (a)(11)(xvii) and adding 
new paragraph (a)(11)(viii), to read as follows:


Sec.  2.89  Chief Information Officer.

    (a) * * *
    (11) * * *
    (viii) Provide technical assistance, coordination, and guidance to 
Department agencies in planning, developing, and carrying out satellite 
remote sensing activities to ensure full consideration and evaluation 
of advanced technology; designate the Executive Secretary for the 
Remote Sensing Coordination Committee; and coordinate administrative, 
management, and budget information relating to the Department's remote 
sensing activities including:
    (A) Inter- and intra-agency meetings, correspondence, and records;
    (B) Budget and management tracking systems; and
    (C) Inter-agency contacts and technology transfer.
* * * * *

    Signed in Washington, DC, this day: March 5, 2012.
Thomas J. Vilsack,
Secretary.
[FR Doc. 2012-5957 Filed 3-13-12; 8:45 am]
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