[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 184 (Friday, September 21, 2012)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 58499-58500]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-23330]


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COMMITTEE FOR PURCHASE FROM PEOPLE WHO ARE BLIND OR SEVERELY DISABLED

41 CFR Parts 51-1


Substitution of Term in a Definition; Addition and Adoption of 
the Use of Specific Interchangeable or Synonymous Terms

AGENCY: Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely 
Disabled.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or 
Severely Disabled (the Committee) administers the AbilityOne[supreg] 
Program pursuant to the authority of the Javits-Wagner-O'Day (JWOD) 
Act. The Committee is substituting the term ``disabled'' for 
``handicapped'' in a term defined in its regulation. Additionally, the 
Committee has deliberated and unanimously voted to approve the use of 
``severely'' disabled and ``significantly'' disabled as interchangeable 
or synonymous terms when referring to people who are severely disabled 
within the AbilityOne Program. The Committee's approval to use 
``severely'' and significantly'' as interchangeable or synonymous terms 
within the AbilityOne Program specifically does not make any change to 
the definition of ``severely disabled individual'' in the JWOD Act or 
expand the population of individuals served within the AbilityOne 
Program.

DATES: Effective Date: September 21, 2012.

ADDRESSES: The Committee office is located at 1421 Jefferson Davis 
Highway, Suite 10800, Arlington, VA 22202-3259.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dennis Lockard, General Counsel, by 
telephone (703) 603-7740, or by facsimile at (703) 603-0030, or by mail 
at the Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely 
Disabled, 1421 Jefferson Davis Hwy., Suite 10800, Arlington, VA 22202-
3259.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

    The Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely 
Disabled (Committee) administers the AbilityOne[supreg] Program 
pursuant to the authority of the Javits-Wagner-O'Day (JWOD) Act (41 
U.S.C. 8501et seq.). The AbilityOne Program provides employment 
opportunities for people who are blind or have other severe 
disabilities through the manufacture and delivery of products and 
services to the Federal Government. 41 U.S.C. 8503(d) authorizes the 
Committee to make rules and regulations necessary to carry out the 
purpose of the Act and the Committee has done so at 41 CFR Chapter 51. 
Within the AbilityOne Program, the term ``severely disabled'' is used 
to describe people with severe disabilities who qualify to participate 
in the program; however, within the Committee's regulation, the terms 
other severely handicapped and severely handicapped individuals are 
used to define persons with severe disabilities. The Committee is 
amending its regulation to correct the terminology and remove 
references to ``handicap'' or ``handicapped'' in the list of 
definitions.
    Additionally, the Committee is aware that the term ``severely 
disabled'' is no longer the description of choice of all disability 
advocates and terms such as ``significantly disabled'' have gained 
acceptance within the disability communities. The Committee is also 
cognizant that the term ``individual with a significant disability'' 
(instead of severe disability) was included and defined in the 1998 
reauthorization of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the term is being 
included in other congressional actions and agency regulations. In 
conjunction with the broader use of the terms ``significant'' 
disability and ``significantly'' disabled, the AbilityOne Program's 
participants, stakeholders and supporters have increasingly accepted 
and used these terms within the program. Consequently, in order to 
ensure alignment and consistency throughout the AbilityOne Program, the 
Committee has voted to permit use of the terms ``significant'' or 
``significantly'' as interchangeable or synonymous with ``severe'' or 
``severely'' when describing individuals with severe disabilities who 
qualify to participate in the AbilityOne Program. The action by the 
Committee to use the terms interchangeably or synonymously does not, 
however, result in any change to the definition or eligibility (either 
expand or narrow) of the population served in the AbilityOne Program 
under the authority of the JWOD Act. In addition, this action does not 
make any change to the statutory name of the Committee or permit the 
use of the synonymous term when describing the Committee.
    The Committee has issued a final rule because this rule does not 
have a significant effect beyond the internal operating procedures of 
the AbilityOne Program and does not have a significant cost or 
administrative impact on others not associated with the AbilityOne 
Program. Therefore, public comment is not required. This interpretive 
rule is action by the Committee to ensure that appropriate terminology 
is used within the AbilityOne Program to describe a significant portion 
of the people who are served under this program.

II. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

    Executive Orders 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess costs, 
benefits and burdens of available regulatory alternatives and, if 
regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize 
net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public 
health and safety effective, distributive impacts, and equity). This is 
not a significant

[[Page 58500]]

regulatory action and, therefore, was not subject to review under 
Section 6(b) of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, 
dated September 30, 1993. This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 
804; therefore, Congressional notification is not required.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    Because notice and opportunity for comment are not required 
pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553 or any other law, the analytical requirements 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) are 
inapplicable. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not 
required and has not been prepared.

Administrative Procedure Act

    The Committee finds under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(A) that the statute 
does not apply to interpretive rules, general statements of policy, or 
rules of agency organization, procedure, or practice. This final rule 
simply substitutes a word in a term defined in the regulation and 
authorizes the use of specific interchangeable or synonymous terms when 
describing individuals who are eligible to participate in the 
AbilityOne Program. Further, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(A), this 
rule of agency organization, procedure and practice is not subject to 
the requirement to provide prior notice and an opportunity for public 
comment. The Committee also finds that the 30-day delay in 
effectiveness, required under 5 U.S.C. 553(d), is inapplicable because 
this rule is not a substantive rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995

    The Committee has determined that the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 
U.S.C. 3501 et seq., does not apply because this rule does not contain 
any information collection requirements that require approval of OMB.

List of Subjects in 41 CFR Part 51-1

    Government procurement, Individuals with disabilities.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Committee for Purchase 
From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled amends 41 CFR Part 51-1 
as set forth below:

41 CFR PART 51-1--GENERAL

0
1. The authority for 41 CFR part 51-1 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 56 FR 48976, Sept. 26, 1991, unless otherwise noted.


0
2. Amend Sec.  51-1.3 by amending the heading of the definition ``Other 
severely handicapped and severely handicapped individuals'' by removing 
the word ``handicapped'' and adding the word ``disabled'' in its place, 
and adding the definition ``Severely disabled individual; Severe 
disability; Significantly disabled individual; Significant disability'' 
to read as follows:


Sec.  51-1.3  Definitions.

* * * * *
    Severely disabled individual; Severe disability; Significantly 
disabled individual; Significant disability; are interchangeable or 
synonymous terms used within the AbilityOne Program to describe persons 
with severe disabilities who qualify to participate in the AbilityOne 
Program.
* * * * *

III. Approval Authority

    The Executive Director of the Committee has approved the 
publication of this notice and authorized the undersigned to sign and 
submit the document to the Office of the Federal Register.

    Dated: September 18, 2012.
Barry S. Lineback,
Director, Business Operations.
[FR Doc. 2012-23330 Filed 9-20-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6353-01-P