[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 109 (Wednesday, June 6, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 33392-33394]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-13733]


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DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE

National Institute of Food and Agriculture


Notice of Intent To Extend a Currently Approved Information 
Collection

AGENCY: National Institute of Food and Agriculture, USDA.

ACTION: Notice and request for comments.

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SUMMARY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (Pub. 
L. 104-13) and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) regulations at 5 
CFR part 1320 (60 FR 44977, Aug. 29, 1995), this notice announces the 
National Institute of Food and Agriculture's (NIFA) intention to revise 
a currently approved information collection entitled, ``Reporting 
Requirements for State Plans of Work for Agricultural Research and 
Extension Formula Funds.''

DATES: Written comments on this notice must be received by August 6, 
2012 to be assured of consideration. Comments received after that date 
will be considered to the extent practicable.

ADDRESSES: Written comments concerning this notice may be submitted by 
any of the following methods: Email: gmendez@nifa.usda.gov; Fax: 202-
720-0857; Mail: Office of Information Technology (OIT), NIFA, USDA, 
STOP 2216, 1400 Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC 20250-2216.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Gidel Mendez, eGovernment Program 
Leader; Email: gmendez@nifa.usda.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:
    Title: Reporting Requirements for State Plans of Work for 
Agricultural Research and Extension Formula Grants.
    OMB Number: 0524-0036.
    Expiration Date of Current Approval: August 31, 2012.
    Type of Request: Intent to seek approval for the extension of a 
currently approved information collection for three years.
    Abstract: The purpose of this collection of information is to 
continue implementing the requirements of sections 202 and 225 of the 
Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 
(AREERA) which require that a plan of work must be submitted by each 
institution and approved by the National Institute of Food and 
Agriculture (NIFA) before formula funds may be provided to the 1862 and 
1890 land-grant institutions. The formula funds are authorized under 
the Hatch Act for agricultural research activities at the 1862 land-
grant institutions, under the Smith-Lever Act for the extension 
activities at the 1862 land-grant institutions, and under sections 1444 
and 1445 of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching 
Policy Act of 1977 for research and extension activities at the 1890 
land-grant institutions. The plan of work must address critical 
agricultural issues in the State and describe the programs and projects 
targeted to address these issues using the NIFA formula funds. The plan 
of work also must describe the institution's multistate activities as 
well as their integrated research and extension activities.
    This collection of information also includes the reporting 
requirements of section 102(c) of AREERA for the 1862 and 1890 land-
grant institutions. This section requires the 1862, 1890, and 1994 
land-grant institutions receiving agricultural research, education, and 
extension formula funds from NIFA of the Department of Agriculture 
(USDA) to establish and implement processes for obtaining input from 
persons who conduct or use agricultural research, extension, or 
education concerning the use of such funds by October 1, 1999. Section 
102(c) further requires that the Secretary of Agriculture promulgate 
regulations that prescribe what the institutions must do to meet this 
requirement and the consequences of not complying with this 
requirement. The Stakeholder Input Requirements for Recipients of 
Agricultural Research, Education, and Extension Formula Funds (7 CFR 
Part 3418) final rule (65 FR 5993, Feb. 8, 2000) applies not only to 
the land-grant institutions receiving formula funds but also to the 
veterinary and forestry schools that are not land-grant institutions 
but receive forestry research funds under the McIntire-Stennis Act of 
1962 and animal health and disease research funds under section 1433 of 
the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act 
of 1977 (NARETPA). Failure to comply with the requirements of this rule 
may result in the withholding of a recipient institution's formula 
funds and redistribution of its share of formula funds to other 
eligible institutions. The institutions are required to annually report 
to NIFA: (1) The actions taken to seek stakeholder input to encourage 
their participation; (2) a brief statement of the process used by the 
recipient institution to identify individuals and groups who are 
stakeholders and to collect input from them; and (3) a statement of how 
collected input was considered. There is no legislatively prescribed 
form or format for this reporting requirement. However, the 1862 and 
1890 land-grant institutions are required to report on their 
Stakeholder Input Process annually as part of their Annual Report of 
Accomplishments and Results.
    Section 103(e) of AREERA requires that the 1862, 1890, and 1994 
land-grant institutions establish a merit review process, prior to 
October 1, 1999, in order to obtain agricultural research and extension 
funds. Section 104(h) of AREERA also stipulated that a scientific peer 
review process be established for research programs funded under 
section 3(c)(3) of the Hatch Act (commonly referred to as Hatch 
Multistate Research Funds).

I. Initial 5-Year Plan of Work

    Estimate of Burden: The Initial 5-Year Plan of Work was submitted 
for the FY 2007-2011 Plan of Work in 2006. Thus, this reporting burden 
has been satisfied and will no longer be collected. Consequently, the 
total reporting and record keeping requirements for the submission of 
the ``Initial 5-Year Plan of Work'' is estimated to average 0 hours per 
response.

II. Annual Update to 5-Year Plan of Work

    Estimate of the Burden: The total reporting and record keeping 
requirements for the submission of the ``Annual Update to the 5-Year 
Plan of Work'' is estimated to average 64 hours per response. There are 
five components of this ``5-Year Plan of Work'': ``Planned Programs,'' 
``Stakeholder Input Process,'' ``Program Review Process,'' ``Multi 
state Activities,'' and ``Integrated Activities.''
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 75.
    Estimated Number of Responses: 150.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 9,600 hours.
    Frequency of Responses: Annually.

III. Annual Report of Accomplishments and Results

    Estimate of the Burden: The total annual reporting and record 
keeping requirements of the ``Annual Report of Accomplishments and 
Results'' is estimated to average 260 hours per response.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 75.
    Estimated Number of Responses: 150.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 39,000 hours.
    Frequency of Responses: Annually.
    Comments: Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed 
collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of 
the functions of the Agency, including whether the information will 
have practical utility; (b) the accuracy of the Agency's estimate of 
the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) ways to 
enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be 
collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of 
information on those who are to respond, including through the use of 
appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological 
collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

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    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the 
request to OMB for approval. All comments will become a matter of 
public record.
    Obtaining a Copy of the Information Collection: A copy of the 
information collection and related instructions may be obtained free of 
charge by contacting Gidel Mendez as directed above.

    Done in Washington, DC this 29th day of May, 2012.
Catherine E. Woteki,
Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics.
[FR Doc. 2012-13733 Filed 6-5-12; 8:45 am]
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