[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 124 (Wednesday, June 27, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 38211-38215]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-15744]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

49 CFR Part 369

[Docket No. FMCSA-2012-0020]
RIN-2126-AB48


Rescission of Quarterly Financial Reporting Requirements

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Direct final rule.

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SUMMARY: By direct final rule, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety 
Administration (FMCSA) eliminates the quarterly financial reporting 
requirements for certain for-hire motor carriers of property (Form QFR) 
and for-hire motor carriers of passengers (Form MP-1). This paperwork 
burden can be removed without an adverse impact on safety or the 
Agency's ability to maintain effective commercial regulations over the 
for-hire trucking and passenger-carrying industries.

DATES: This rule is effective August 27, 2012, unless an adverse 
comment, or notice of intent to submit an adverse comment, is either 
submitted to our online docket via http://www.regulations.gov on or 
before July 27, 2012 or reaches the Docket Management Facility by that 
date. If an adverse comment, or notice of intent to submit an adverse 
comment, is received by July 27, 2012, we will withdraw this direct 
final rule and publish a timely notice of withdrawal in the Federal 
Register.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by docket number FMCSA-
2012-0020 using any one of the following methods:
    (1) Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.
    (2) Fax: 202-493-2251.
    (3) Mail: Docket Management Facility (M-30), U.S. Department of 
Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001.
    (4) Hand delivery: Same as mail address above, between 9 a.m. and 5 
p.m. e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. The 
telephone number is 202-366-9329.
    To avoid duplication, please use only one of these four methods. 
See the ``Public Participation and Comments'' portion of the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below for instructions on submitting 
comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this rule, 
email or call Ms. Vivian Oliver, Office of Research and Information 
Technology, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, 1200 New 
Jersey Ave. SE., Washington, DC 20590; Telephone 202-366-2974; email 
Vivian.Oliver@dot.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Public Participation and Comments

    If you would like to participate in this rulemaking, you may submit 
comments and related materials. All comments received will be posted, 
without change, to http://www.regulations.gov and will include any 
personal information you have provided.

A. Submitting Comments

    If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this 
rulemaking (FMCSA-2012-0020), indicate the specific section of this 
document to which each comment applies, and provide a reason for each 
suggestion or recommendation. You may submit your comments and material 
online, or by fax, mail or hand delivery, but please use only one of 
these means. We recommend that you include your name and a mailing 
address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of your 
document so that we can contact you if we have questions regarding your 
submission. As a reminder, FMCSA will only consider adverse comments as 
defined in 49 CFR 389.39(b) and explained below.
    To submit your comment online, go to http://www.regulations.gov, 
click on the ``submit a comment'' box, which will then become 
highlighted in blue. In the ``Document Type'' drop down menu select 
``Rule'' and insert ``FMCSA-2012-0020'' in the ``Keyword'' box. Click 
``Search,'' then click on the balloon shape in the ``Actions'' column. 
If you submit your comments by mail or hand delivery, submit them in an 
unbound format, no larger than 8\1/2\ by 11 inches, suitable for 
copying and electronic filing. If you submit them by mail and would 
like to know that they reached the facility, please enclose a stamped, 
self-addressed postcard or envelope.

B. Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments, go to http://www.regulations.gov, click on the 
``read comments'' box, which will then become highlighted in blue. In 
the ``Keyword'' box insert ``FMCSA-2012-0020'' and click ``Search.'' 
Click the ``Open Docket Folder'' in the ``Actions'' column. If you do 
not have access to the Internet, you may also view the docket online by 
visiting the Docket Management Facility in Room W12-140 on the ground 
floor of the Department of Transportation West Building, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. 
e.t., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

C. Privacy Act

    Anyone can search the electronic form of comments received into any 
of our dockets by the name of the individual submitting the comment (or 
signing the comment, if submitted on

[[Page 38212]]

behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). You may review 
a Privacy Act notice regarding our public dockets in the January 17, 
2008 issue of the Federal Register (73 FR 3316).

II. Regulatory Information

    FMCSA publishes this direct final rule under 49 CFR 389.11 and 
389.39, because the Agency has determined that the rule makes non-
controversial, minor amendments to 49 CFR part 369 that will reduce 
reporting requirements for certain for-hire motor carriers. FMCSA does 
not expect any adverse comments. If no adverse comments or notices of 
intent to submit an adverse comment are received by July 27, 2012, this 
rule will become effective as stated in the DATES section. In that 
case, approximately 30 days before the effective date, we will publish 
a document in the Federal Register stating that no adverse comments 
were received and confirming that this rule will become effective as 
scheduled. However, if we receive any adverse comments or notices of 
intent to submit an adverse comment, we will publish a document in the 
Federal Register announcing the withdrawal of all or part of this 
direct final rule. If we decide to proceed with a rulemaking following 
receipt of any adverse comments, we will publish a separate notice of 
proposed rulemaking (NPRM) and provide a new opportunity for comment.
    A comment is considered ``adverse'' if the comment explains why 
this rule or a part of this rule would be inappropriate, including a 
challenge to its underlying premise or approach, or would be 
ineffective or unacceptable without a change.

III. Background

Annual Financial Reporting Requirements

    Section 14123 of title 49, United States Code, requires the filing 
of annual financial reports by certain for-hire motor carriers of 
property and household goods (Form M).
    The annual reporting program was implemented on Dec. 24, 1938 (3 FR 
3158) (the first annual report for 1938 was due by Mar. 31, 1939) and 
subsequently was transferred from the Interstate Commerce Commission 
(ICC) to the U.S. Department of Transportation's (DOT) Bureau of 
Transportation Statistics (BTS) on January 1, 1996. The Secretary of 
DOT delegated to BTS the responsibility for the program on December 17, 
1996 (61 FR 68162-02). Responsibility for collection of Form M (for-
hire property carriers, including household goods carriers) and Form 
MP-1 (for-hire passenger carriers), including quarterly reporting 
requirements for such forms (Form QFR), was transferred from the BTS to 
the FMCSA on August 17, 2004 (69 FR 51009), and the regulations were 
redesignated as 49 CFR part 369 on August 10, 2006 (71 FR 45740). FMCSA 
has continued to collect carriers' annual reports and to furnish copies 
of the reports requested under the Freedom of Information Act.

Quarterly Financial Reporting

    Subsection 14123(a)(2) of title 49, United States Code, allows the 
Agency to require quarterly financial reports from for-hire property 
and passenger carriers, but it does not mandate that the Agency require 
these reports to be submitted. These requirements are included in 49 
CFR Part 369 and apply to Class I (average annual gross transportation 
operating revenues of $10 million or more) and Class II (average annual 
gross transportation operating revenues of $3 million dollars or more, 
but less than $10 million) for-hire motor carriers of property. The 
requirements also apply to Class I (average annual gross transportation 
operating revenues of $5 million or more) for-hire motor carriers of 
passengers.
E.O. 13563 Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review
    On January 18, 2011, the President issued Executive Order 13563, 
``Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review'' (76 FR 3821, January 21, 
2011), which required agencies, among other things, to prepare plans 
for reviewing existing rules. On February 16, 2011, DOT published a 
notice requesting comments on its regulatory review plan (76 FR 8940). 
A public meeting on this issue was held on March 14, 2011. DOT placed 
all of the comments it received in docket DOT-OST-2011-0025, along with 
a transcript of the March 14 meeting. DOT received 102 comments, many 
offering multiple suggestions. One person argued that the financial 
reporting requirements transferred from the ICC to FMCSA provide no 
discernible benefits to the government or industry.
    FMCSA rescinds the quarterly financial reporting requirements for 
certain for-hire motor carriers of property (Form QFR) and for-hire 
motor carriers of passengers (Form MP-1). This burden can be removed 
without an adverse impact on safety or the Agency[acute]s ability to 
maintain effective commercial regulations over the for-hire trucking 
and passenger-carrying industries. FMCSA does not currently use the 
quarterly reports because the reports cover a small subset of the motor 
carriers of property and motor carriers of passengers that are subject 
to the Agency's safety oversight and the financial reporting data is 
not necessary to monitor carriers' safety performance. The information 
collected does not currently support any Agency regulatory function, 
nor does it have practical utility for the Agency or for those carriers 
who must comply with the reporting requirement.
    This direct final rulemaking is non-controversial because it 
``Make[s] minor changes to rules regarding statistics and reporting 
requirements, such as a change in reporting period (for example, from 
quarterly to annually) or eliminat[es] a type of data collection no 
longer necessary'' 49 CFR 389.39(a)(5). Elimination of the outdated and 
unnecessary quarterly reporting requirement falls squarely within the 
intended purpose of a direct final rule. FMCSA, therefore, finds there 
is good cause to dispense with the normal notice and comment procedures 
since reducing the reporting requirement is not likely to be 
controversial. Consequently, receipt of public comments prior to 
finalizing this action is unnecessary. 49 CFR 389.11.

IV. Discussion of the Rule

    For the reasons discussed in the Background section, above, FMCSA 
amends 49 CFR part 369 by eliminating the quarterly reporting 
requirement under 49 CFR 369.1 and 369.4. In addition, FMCSA makes 
other conforming technical amendments to 49 CFR 369.8, 369.9, and 
369.11.
    In the course of redesignating 49 CFR part 1420 as 49 CFR part 369 
in 2006 (August 10, 2006, 71 FR 45740), the authority citation for part 
369 was inadvertently corrupted by adding references to (1) 5 U.S.C. 
553 and 559 of the Administrative Procedure Act relating to rulemaking 
and administrative law judges, and (2) 16 U.S.C. 1456, a provision of 
the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA) of 1972. These statutes provide 
no authority for part 369 and the references have therefore been 
removed.

V. Regulatory Analyses

    When developing this direct final rule, FMCSA considered numerous 
statutes and executive orders related to rulemaking. The Agency's 
analyses are summarized below.

A. Regulatory Planning and Review

    Under Executive Order (E.O.) 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993) 
as supplemented by E.O. 13563 (76 FR

[[Page 38213]]

3821, January 18, 2011), FMCSA must determine whether a regulatory 
action is ``significant'' and, therefore, subject to Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB) review and the requirements of the E.O. The 
Order defines ``significant regulatory action'' as one that is likely 
to result in a rule that may:
    (1) Have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million or more or 
adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the 
economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public 
health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or 
communities.
    (2) Create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an 
action taken or planned by another agency.
    (3) Materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, 
user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients 
thereof.
    (4) Raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal 
mandates, the President's priorities, or the principles set forth in 
the E.O.
    This rule is not a significant regulatory action under section 3(f) 
of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, and does not 
require an assessment of potential costs and benefits under section 
6(a)(3) of that Order. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has 
not reviewed it under that Order. This rule will not have a significant 
economic impact. In fact, elimination of the reporting requirement 
will, if anything, have a beneficial economic impact on industry.

B. Small Entities

    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), as amended by the Small 
Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121, 
Title II, 110 Stat. 857), FMCSA is not required to prepare a final 
regulatory flexibility analysis under 5 U.S.C. 604(a) for this final 
rule because the agency has not issued an NPRM prior to this action.

C. Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule eliminates two quarterly reporting requirements that are 
currently reported to OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 
1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). Form QFR Quarterly for property carriers, 
authorized by OMB under information collection 2126-0033, is two pages 
long and takes approximately 27 minutes for each of the approximately 
111 carriers to complete. This report is filed 4 times per year, so the 
total burden hour impact per filer per year is 4 x 27/60 = 1.8 hours. 
Multiplying this figure by the 111 carriers that file quarterly reports 
yields a total burden estimate of 200 hours.
    FMCSA assumes that completion and submission of Form QFR is 
performed by an accountant designated by the business entity. The 
median salary of an accountant in the truck transportation industry is 
$25.90 per hour (BLS, May 2010).\1\ Two adjustments are made to this 
hourly compensation estimate. First, employee benefits are estimated at 
50.0 percent of the employee wage.\2\ Second, employee wage and 
benefits are increased by 27 percent to include relevant firm 
overhead.\3\ Applying the estimated 50.0 percent factor for employee 
benefits and 27 percent for overhead results in $49.34 in hourly 
compensation for the accountant ($25.90 x (1 + 0.50) x (1 + 0.27) = 
$49.34). The total annual salary cost burden associated with the 
filings is $9,868 ($49.34 x 200 hours = $9,868.00).
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    \1\ Bureau of Labor Statistics, ``Occupational Employment 
Survey''. May 2010. http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/naics3_484000.htm (accessed December 15, 2011). North American Industry 
Classification System (NAICS) 484000, Truck Transportation, Standard 
Occupational Classification (SOC) 13-2011, Accountants and Auditors.
    \2\ FMCSA estimates this 50% employee benefit rate by using the 
private industry average wage ($16.03 per hour) and benefit 
information ($8.01 per hour) for production, transportation, and 
moving material workers. Benefits thus amount to 50.0 percent of 
wages (0.500 = $8.01/$16.03). From ``Employer Costs for Employee 
Compensation--September 2010''. Accessed on 23-August-2011 at http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf.
    \3\ Berwick, Farooq. ``Truck Costing Model for Transportation 
Managers''. Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute, North 
Dakota State University (2003) accessed on 23-August-2011 at http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/24000/24200/24223/24223.pdf.
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    The Class I passenger carrier financial quarterly survey (MP-1 
Quarterly), which is two pages long and takes about 18 minutes to 
complete for the estimated 2 participating carriers is authorized by 
OMB under information collection 2126-0031. Since this report is also 
filed 4 times per year, the total burden hours associated with the 
requirement are 4 x 18/60 x 2 = 2.4 hours.
    FMCSA believes the completion and submission of Form MP-1 is 
typically performed by a business and financial operations expert 
designated by the business entity because of the level of detail in the 
financial reports. The median salary of a business and financial 
operations expert in the interurban and rural bus transportation 
industry is $26.41 per hour (BLS, May 2010).\4\ Two adjustments are 
made to this hourly estimate. First, employee benefits are estimated at 
50.0 percent of the employee wage.\5\ Second, employee wage and 
benefits are increased by 27 percent to include relevant firm 
overhead.\6\ Applying the estimated 50.0 percent factor for employee 
benefits and 27 percent for overhead results in $50.31 in hourly 
compensation for the business and financial operations expert ($26.41 x 
(1 + 0.50) x (1 + 0.27) = $50.31). The total annual salary cost burden 
associated with the filings is $121 ($50.31 x 2.4 hours = $120.74, 
rounded to the nearest dollar).
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    \4\ Bureau of Labor Statistics, ``Occupational Employment 
Survey''. May 2010. http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/naics4_485200.htm (accessed December 15, 2011). North American Industry 
Classification System (NAICS) 485200, Interurban and Rural Bus 
Transportation, Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) 13-2000, 
Business and Financial Operations Occupations.
    \5\ FMCSA estimates this 50% employee benefit rate by using the 
private industry average wage ($16.03 per hour) and benefit 
information ($8.01 per hour) for production, transportation, and 
moving material workers. Benefits thus amount to 50.0 percent of 
wages (0.500 = $8.01/$16.03). From ``Employer Costs for Employee 
Compensation--September 2010''. Accessed on 23-August-2011 at http://www.bls.gov/news.release/pdf/ecec.pdf.
    \6\ Berwick, Farooq. ``Truck Costing Model for Transportation 
Managers''. Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute, North 
Dakota State University (2003) accessed on 23-August-2011 at http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/24000/24200/24223/24223.pdf.
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    Collectively, eliminating these reporting requirements reduces the 
burden to industry by 202.4 hours and $9,989.
    The PRA requires that each agency ``shall certify * * * that each 
collection of information * * * is necessary for the proper performance 
of the functions of the agency, including that the information has 
practical utility.'' 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(3)(A); 5 CFR 1320.5(d)(1)(iii). 
FMCSA can no longer certify that the quarterly requirements are 
``necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the 
agency.'' Therefore, FMCSA is discontinuing the quarterly reporting 
requirements.

D. Federalism

    A rule has federalism implications under Executive Order 13132, 
Federalism, if it has a substantial direct effect on State or local 
governments and would either preempt State law or impose a substantial 
direct cost of compliance on the States. FMCSA has analyzed this rule 
under that Order and have determined that it does not have federalism 
implications.

E. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1531-1538) 
requires Federal agencies to assess the effects of their discretionary 
regulatory actions. In particular, the Act addresses actions that may 
result in the expenditure by a

[[Page 38214]]

State, local, or tribal government, in the aggregate, or by the private 
sector of $143.1 million (which is the value of $100,000,000 in 2010 
after adjusting for inflation) or more in any 1 year. This rule would 
not result in such an expenditure.

F. Taking of Private Property

    This rule will not effect a taking of private property or otherwise 
have taking implications under Executive Order 12630, Governmental 
Actions and Interference with Constitutionally Protected Property 
Rights.

G. Civil Justice Reform

    This rule meets applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 3(b)(2) 
of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform, to minimize litigation, 
eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

H. Protection of Children

    FMCSA has analyzed this rule under Executive Order 13045, 
Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety 
Risks. This rule is not economically significant and does not create an 
environmental risk to health or risk to safety that may 
disproportionately affect children.

I. Energy Effects

    FMCSA has analyzed this rule under Executive Order 13211, Actions 
Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use. The Agency has determined that it is not a 
``significant energy action'' under that order because it is not a 
``significant regulatory action'' under Executive Order 12866 and will 
not have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or 
use of energy. The Administrator of the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs has not designated it as a significant energy 
action. Therefore, it does not require a Statement of Energy Effects 
under Executive Order 13211.

J. Environment

    The Agency analyzed this direct final rule for the purpose of the 
National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321 et 
seq.) and determined under our environmental procedures Order 5610.1, 
published March 1, 2004 (69 FR 9680), that this action is categorically 
excluded under two categorical exclusions (CEs) in the Order from 
further environmental documentation. These are found in Appendix 2, 
paragraph 4, which covers data and information gathering, and Appendix 
2, paragraph 6(y)(2) concerning reports provided by motor carriers. 
This direct final rulemaking makes minor changes to rules regarding ``a 
change in reporting period (for example, from quarterly to annually) or 
eliminating a type of data collection no longer necessary,'' as 
authorized by 49 CFR 389.39(a)(5). The action involves no extraordinary 
circumstances that would have any effect on the quality of the 
environment. Thus, the action does not require an environmental 
assessment or an environmental impact statement.
    FMCSA also analyzed this rule under the Clean Air Act, as amended 
(CAA), section 176(c), (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.) and implementing 
regulations promulgated by the Environmental Protection Agency. 
Approval of this action is exempt from the CAA's general conformity 
requirement since it does not result in any potential increase in 
emissions that are above the general conformity rule's de minimis 
emission threshold levels (40 CFR 93.153(c)(2)). This action merely 
eliminates a reporting requirement.
    The Categorical Exclusion Determination is available for inspection 
or copying in the regulations.gov Web site listed under ADDRESSES.

List of Subjects in 49 CFR Part 369

    Motor carriers, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    In consideration of the foregoing, FMCSA amends 49 CFR part 369 in 
title 49, Code of Federal Regulations, chapter III, subchapter B, as 
follows:

PART 369--[AMENDED]

0
1. The authority citation for part 369 is revised to read as follows.

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 14123; 49 CFR 1.73.


0
2. Amend Sec.  369.1, by removing paragraph (b) and redesignating 
paragraph (c) as paragraph (b) and revising it to read as follows.


Sec.  369.1  Annual reports of motor carriers of property, motor 
carriers of household goods, and dual property carriers.

* * * * *
    (b) Where to file report. Carriers must file the annual reports 
with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration at the address in 
Sec.  369.6. You can obtain blank copies of the report forms from the 
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Web site http://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/forms/reporting/mcs_info.htm#fos.

0
3. Revise Sec.  369.4 to read as follows.


Sec.  369.4  Annual reports of Class I carriers of passengers.

    (a) All Class I motor carriers of passengers shall complete and 
file Motor Carrier Annual Report Form MP-1 for Motor Carriers of 
Passengers (Form MP-1).
    (b) Accounting period. (1) Motor Carrier Annual Report Form MP-1 
shall be used to file annual selected motor carrier data.
    (2) The annual accounting period shall be based either:
    (i) On the 31st day of December in each year, or
    (ii) An accounting year of thirteen 4-week periods ending at the 
close of the last 7 days of each calendar year.
    (3) A carrier electing to adopt an accounting year of thirteen 4-
week periods shall file with the FMCSA a statement showing the day on 
which its accounting year will close. A subsequent change in the 
accounting period may not be made except by authority of the FMCSA.
    (c) The annual report shall be filed on or before March 31 of the 
year following the year to which it relates. The annual report shall be 
filed in duplicate with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration 
at the address in Sec.  369.6. Copies of Form MP-1 may be obtained from 
the FMCSA.

0
4. Amend Sec.  369.8 by revising paragraph (d) and removing the table 
following it, to read as follows.


Sec.  369.8  Requests for exemptions from filing.

* * * * *
    (d) When requests are due. The timing of a request for an exemption 
from filing is the same as the timing for a request for an exemption 
from public release contained in Sec.  369.9(d). For Annual Form M, 
both the report and the request are due by March 31.
* * * * *

0
5. Amend Sec.  369.9 by removing paragraph (d)(4) and revising 
paragraph (e)(4) and removing the table following it, to read as 
follows.


Sec.  369.9  Requests for exemptions from public release.

* * * * *
    (e) * * *
    (4) FMCSA will grant or deny each request no later than 90 days 
after the request's due date as defined in paragraph (d) of this 
section. The decision by FMCSA shall be administratively final. For 
Annual Form M, both the report and the request are due by March 31, and 
the decision is due by June 30.
* * * * *


Sec.  369.11  [Removed]

0
6. Remove Sec.  369.11.


[[Page 38215]]


    Issued on: June 22, 2012.
Anne S. Ferro,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2012-15744 Filed 6-26-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P