[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 246 (Friday, December 21, 2012)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 75589-75590]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-30805]


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Proposed Rules
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains notices to the public of 
the proposed issuance of rules and regulations. The purpose of these 
notices is to give interested persons an opportunity to participate in 
the rule making prior to the adoption of the final rules.

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Federal Register / Vol. 77, No. 246 / Friday, December 21, 2012 / 
Proposed Rules

[[Page 75589]]


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OFFICE OF PERSONNEL MANAGEMENT

5 CFR Part 532

RIN 3206-AM75


Prevailing Rate Systems; Redefinition of the Minneapolis-St. 
Paul, MN, and Southwestern Wisconsin Appropriated Fund Federal Wage 
System Wage Areas

AGENCY: U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

ACTION: Proposed rule with request for comments.

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SUMMARY: The U.S. Office of Personnel Management is issuing a proposed 
rule that would redefine the geographic boundaries of the Minneapolis-
St. Paul, MN, and Southwestern Wisconsin appropriated fund Federal Wage 
System wage areas. The proposed rule would redefine Wabasha County, MN, 
from the Southwestern Wisconsin wage area to the Minneapolis-St. Paul 
wage area. This change is based on a recent consensus recommendation of 
the Federal Prevailing Rate Advisory Committee to best match Wabasha 
County to a nearby FWS survey area.

DATES: We must receive comments on or before January 22, 2013.

ADDRESSES: Send or deliver comments to Jerome D. Mikowicz, Deputy 
Associate Director for Pay and Leave, Employee Services, U.S. Office of 
Personnel Management, Room 7H31, 1900 E Street NW., Washington, DC 
20415-8200; email pay-leave-policy@opm.gov; or FAX: (202) 606-4264.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Madeline Gonzalez, (202) 606-2838; 
email pay-leave-policy@opm.gov; or Fax: (202) 606-4264.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The U.S. Office of Personnel Management 
(OPM) is issuing a proposed rule that would redefine the geographic 
boundaries of the Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN, and Southwestern Wisconsin 
appropriated fund Federal Wage System wage areas. The proposed rule 
would redefine Wabasha County, MN, from the Southwestern Wisconsin wage 
area to the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage area.
    OPM considers the following regulatory criteria under 5 CFR 532.211 
when defining FWS wage area boundaries:
    (i) Distance, transportation facilities, and geographic features;
    (ii) Commuting patterns; and
    (iii) Similarities in overall population, employment, and the kinds 
and sizes of private industrial establishments.
    Dodge, Olmsted, and Wabasha Counties, MN, comprise the Rochester, 
MN Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). The Rochester MSA is split 
between the Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN, and Southwestern Wisconsin wage 
areas. Dodge and Olmsted Counties are part of the area of application 
of the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage area and Wabasha County is part of the 
area of application of the Southwestern Wisconsin wage area.
    Based on an analysis of the regulatory criteria for Olmsted County, 
the core county in the Rochester MSA, the entire Rochester MSA would be 
defined to the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage area. When measuring to 
cities, the distance criterion does not favor one wage area more than 
another. Since the percentage difference between the city of Rochester 
and the closest cities in Minneapolis-St. Paul and Southwestern 
Wisconsin survey areas is less than 10 percent, distance to the closest 
cities is not a definitive determining factor. However, when measuring 
to host installations, the distance criterion favors the Minneapolis-
St. Paul wage area more than the Southwestern Wisconsin wage area. The 
commuting patterns criterion does not favor one wage area more than 
another. The difference between the resident workforce commuting to 
work in the Minneapolis-St. Paul and Southwestern Wisconsin survey 
areas is insignificant; however, marginally more people commute into 
the Minneapolis-St. Paul survey area (1.07 percent) than into the 
Southwestern Wisconsin survey area (0.05 percent). The overall 
population and employment and the kinds and sizes of private industrial 
establishments criterion does not favor one wage area more than 
another.
    Based on this analysis, we believe Olmsted County is appropriately 
defined to the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage area. OPM regulations at 5 CFR 
532.211 permit splitting MSAs only in very unusual circumstances. There 
appear to be no unusual circumstances that would permit splitting the 
Rochester MSA. To comply with OPM regulations not to split MSAs, 
Wabasha County would be redefined to the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage 
area. The remaining county in the Rochester MSA, Dodge County, is 
already defined to the Minneapolis-St. Paul wage area. There are 
currently no FWS employees working in Wabasha County.
    The Federal Prevailing Rate Advisory Committee (FPRAC), the 
national labor-management committee responsible for advising OPM on 
matters concerning the pay of FWS employees, recommended this change by 
consensus. This change would be effective on the first day of the first 
applicable pay period beginning on or after 30 days following 
publication of the final regulations. FPRAC recommended no other 
changes in the geographic definitions of the Minneapolis-St. Paul and 
Southwestern Wisconsin wage areas.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    I certify that these regulations would not have a significant 
economic impact on a substantial number of small entities because they 
would affect only Federal agencies and employees.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 532

    Administrative practice and procedure, Freedom of information, 
Government employees, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Wages.

U.S. Office of Personnel Management.
John Berry,
Director.
    Accordingly, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management is proposing 
to amend 5 CFR part 532 as follows:

PART 532--PREVAILING RATE SYSTEMS

    1. The authority citation for part 532 continues to read as 
follows:

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 5343, 5346; Sec.  532.707 also issued under 
5 U.S.C. 552.

Appendix C to Subpart B of Part 532--Appropriated Fund Wage and Survey 
Areas

    2. Appendix C to subpart B is amended by revising the wage area 
listings for the Minneapolis-St. Paul,

[[Page 75590]]

MN, and Southwestern Wisconsin wage areas to read as follows:

 
 
                                * * * * *
                                MINNESOTA
 
                                * * * * *
                          Minneapolis-St. Paul
                               Survey Area
Minnesota:
  Anoka
  Carver
  Chisago
  Dakota
  Hennepin
  Ramsey
  Scott
  Washington
  Wright
Wisconsin:
  St. Croix
                 Area of Application. Survey Area Plus:
Minnesota:
  Benton
  Big Stone
  Blue Earth
  Brown
  Chippewa
  Cottonwood
  Dodge
  Douglas
  Faribault
  Freeborn
  Goodhue
  Grant
  Isanti
  Kanabec
  Kandiyohi
  Lac Qui Parle
  Le Sueur
  McLeod
  Martin
  Meeker
  Mille Lacs
  Morrison
  Mower
  Nicollet
  Olmsted
  Pope
  Redwood
  Renville
  Rice
  Sherburne
  Sibley
  Stearns
  Steele
  Stevens
  Swift
  Todd
  Traverse
  Wabasha
  Wadena
  Waseca
  Watonwan
  Yellow Medicine
Wisconsin:
  Pierce
  Polk
 
                                * * * * *
                                WISCONSIN
                         Southwestern Wisconsin
                               Survey Area
Wisconsin:
  Chippewa
  Eau Claire
  Monroe
  Trempealeau
                 Area of Application. Survey Area Plus:
Minnesota:
  Fillmore
  Houston
  Winona
Wisconsin:
  Barron
  Buffalo
  Clark
  Crawford
  Dunn
  Florence
  Forest
  Jackson
  Juneau
  Langlade
  Lincoln
  Marathon
  Marinette
  Menominee
  Oneida
  Pepin
  Portage
  Price
  Richland
  Rusk
  Shawano
  Taylor
  Vernon
  Vilas
  Waupaca
  Wood
 
                                * * * * *
 

[FR Doc. 2012-30805 Filed 12-20-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6325-39-P