[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 81 (Monday, April 28, 2014)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 23306-23316]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-09376]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

49 CFR Parts 370, 371, 373, 375, 376, 378, 379, 387, 389, 390, 391, 
395, 396, and 398

[Docket No. FMCSA-2012-0376]
RIN 2126-AB47


Electronic Documents and Signatures

AGENCY: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), DOT.

ACTION: Notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM).

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SUMMARY: FMCSA proposes amendments to its regulations to allow the use 
of electronic records and signatures to satisfy FMCSA's regulatory 
requirements. The amendments would permit the use of electronic methods 
to sign, certify, generate, exchange or maintain records so long as the 
documents accurately reflect the information in the record and can be 
used for their intended purpose. This proposed rule would apply only to 
those documents that FMCSA's regulations obligate entities or 
individuals to retain; it would not apply to forms or other documents 
that must be submitted directly to FMCSA. This proposed rule responds 
in part to the President's January 2011 Regulatory Review and Reform 
initiative and would implement the Government Paperwork Elimination Act 
(GPEA) and the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce 
Act (E-SIGN).

DATES: You may submit comments on or before June 27, 2014. Comments 
received after this date will be considered to the extent practicable.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by the docket number 
FMCSA-2012-0376 using any one of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: www.regulations.gov.
     Fax: 202-493-2251.
     Mail: Docket Services (M-30), U.S. Department of 
Transportation, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140, 1200 New 
Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590-0001.
     Hand delivery: Same as mail address above, between 9 a.m. 
and 5 p.m., 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 Request for Comments'' heading under 
the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section below for instructions on 
submitting comments.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: If you have questions on this proposed 
rule, please call or email Genevieve Sapir, Office of Counsel, FMCSA, 
telephone: 202-366-7056; email: Genevieve.Sapir@dot.gov. If you have 
questions on viewing or submitting material to the docket, please call 
Barbara Hairston, Docket Services, telephone 202-366-3024.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of 
this NPRM is organized as follows.

Table of Contents

I. Executive Summary
    A. Purpose and Summary of the Major Provisions
    B. Benefits and Costs
II. Public Participation and Request for Comments
    A. Submitting Comments
    B. Viewing Comments and Documents
    C. Privacy Act
III. Background
IV. Legal Basis for the Rulemaking
V. Section-by-Section Analysis
    A. Part 370
    B. Part 371
    C. Part 373
    D. Part 375
    E. Part 376
    F. Part 378
    G. Part 379
    H. Part 387
    I. Part 389
    J. Part 390
    K. Part 391

[[Page 23307]]

    L. Part 395
    M. Part 396
    N. Part 398
VI. Rulemaking Analysis

I. Executive Summary

A. Purpose and Summary of the Major Provisions

    This proposed rule would establish parity between paper and 
electronic documents and signatures, and expand businesses' and 
individuals' ability to use electronic methods to comply with FMCSA's 
requirements. This rule would apply only to documents that FMCSA 
requires individuals or entities to retain. It would also update 
references to outdated recordkeeping and reporting methods throughout 
chapter III of subtitle B of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 
CFR parts 300-399) to make them technologically neutral.
    This proposed rulemaking would implement the Government Paperwork 
Elimination Act (GPEA) and the Electronic Signatures in Global and 
National Commerce Act (E-SIGN).

B. Benefits and Costs

    FMCSA expects this proposed rule to provide regulatory relief to 
the industry. Under this proposed rule, regulated entities would have 
the flexibility to conduct business using either electronic or 
traditional paper-based methods. The Agency also expects regulated 
entities to choose technologies that would maximize benefits in 
accordance with their individual needs and circumstances.

II. Public Participation and Request for Comments

A. Submitting Comments

    If you submit a comment, please include the docket number for this 
rulemaking (FMCSA-2012-0376), 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 
either online, by fax, mail, or hand delivery, but please use only one 
of these means. FMCSA recommends that you include your name and a 
mailing address, an email address, or a phone number in the body of 
your document so the Agency can contact you if it has questions 
regarding your submission.
    To submit your comment online, go to www.regulations.gov, put the 
docket number, ``FMCSA-2012-0376'' in the ``Keyword'' box, and click 
``Search.'' When the new screen appears, click on the ``Comment Now!'' 
button and type your comment into the text box in the following screen. 
Choose whether you are submitting your comment as an individual or on 
behalf of a third party and then submit. 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 comments by mail and would like to know that they reached the 
facility, please enclose a stamped, self-addressed postcard or 
envelope.
    FMCSA will consider all comments and material received during the 
comment period and may change this proposed rule based on your 
comments.

B. Viewing Comments and Documents

    To view comments and any document mentioned in this preamble, go to 
www.regulations.gov, insert the docket number, ``FMCSA-2012-0376'' in 
the ``Keyword'' box, and click ``Search.'' Next, click ``Open Docket 
Folder'' button and choose the document listed to review. If you do not 
have access to the Internet, you may view the docket online by visiting 
the Docket Services in Room W12-140 on the ground floor of the DOT West 
Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Washington, DC 20590, between 9 
a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays.

C. Privacy Act

    All comments received will be posted without change to 
www.regulations.gov and will include any personal information you have 
provided. Anyone may search the electronic form of all comments 
received into any of our dockets by the name of the individual 
submitting the comment (or of the person signing the comment, if 
submitted on behalf of an association, business, labor union, etc.). 
You may review the DOT Privacy Act Statement for the Federal Docket 
Management System published in the Federal Register (FR) on December 
29, 2010 (75 FR 82132), or you may visit http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2010-12-29/pdf/2010-32876.pdf.

III. Background

    In recent years, FMCSA has received a number of requests from motor 
carriers and other interested parties asking permission to use 
electronic methods to comply with various Agency regulations that 
require motor carriers and individuals to generate, sign or store 
documents. Previously, FMCSA made determinations on a case-by-case 
basis as to whether certain categories of documents could be generated, 
signed or stored electronically. Modern technologies and evolving 
business practices, however, have rendered the distinction between 
paper and electronic documents and signatures obsolete in most cases. 
Recognizing that many businesses and individuals can achieve greater 
efficiencies using electronic methods but that others prefer paper-
based recordkeeping, FMCSA decided to give regulated entities the 
flexibility to choose which methods to use.
    As a result, on January 4, 2011, FMCSA issued regulatory guidance 
(76 FR 23338) on the use of electronic signatures and documents to 
satisfy FMCSA's regulatory requirements. That guidance provided that, 
for the purposes of complying with any provision in chapter III of 
subtitle B of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR parts 300-
399) that requires a document to be created, signed, certified or 
retained by any person or entity, that person or entity may, but is not 
required to, use electronic methods. The guidance further stated that 
in order for electronic methods to satisfy FMCSA's regulatory 
requirements, the documents or signatures had to accurately reflect the 
information in the record and remain accessible in a form that can be 
accurately viewed or reproduced according to Agency rules.
    In addition, Presidential Executive Order (E.O.) 13563, ``Improving 
Regulation and Regulatory Review'' (issued January 18, 2011, and 
published January 21 at 76 FR 3821), prompted DOT to publish a notice 
in the Federal Register (76 FR 8940, February 16, 2011). This notice 
requested comments on a plan for reviewing existing rules, as well as 
identification of existing rules that DOT should review because they 
may be outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome. 
DOT placed all retrospective regulatory review comments, including a 
transcript of a March 14, 2011, public meeting, in docket DOT-OST-2011-
0025. This proposed rule responds to a comment submitted to that 
docket.
    This proposed rulemaking would codify FMCSA's guidance in newly 
proposed Sec.  390.32 and eliminate references to outdated 
recordkeeping and reporting methods throughout the Agency's 
regulations. For further description of the proposed changes, please 
see the Section-by-Section Analysis in Part V of this preamble.

IV. Legal Basis for the Rulemaking

    The Motor Carrier Safety Act of 1984 (Pub. L. 98-554, Title II, 98 
Stat. 2832, October 30, 1984) (the 1984 Act) provides authority to 
regulate drivers, motor carriers, and vehicle equipment. Section 211 of 
the 1984 Act grants the

[[Page 23308]]

Secretary broad power, in carrying out motor carrier safety statutes 
and regulations, to ``prescribe recordkeeping and reporting 
requirements'' and to ``perform other acts the Secretary considers 
appropriate'' (49 U.S.C. 31133(a)(8) and (10)). The FMCSA Administrator 
has been delegated authority under 49 CFR 1.86(f) to carry out the 
functions vested in the Secretary of Transportation by 49 U.S.C. 
chapter 311, subchapters I and III, relating to commercial motor 
vehicle programs and safety regulation.
    Two Federal statutes govern the Agency's implementation of 
electronic document and signature requirements. The GPEA (Title XVII 
(Sec. 1701-1710) of Public Law 105-277, 112 Stat. 2681-749, 44 U.S.C. 
3504 note) was enacted on October 21, 1998, to improve customer service 
and governmental efficiency through the use of information technology. 
E-SIGN (Pub. L. 106-229, 114 Stat. 464, 15 U.S.C. 7001-7031) was signed 
into law on June 30, 2000. E-SIGN was designed to promote the use of 
electronic contract formation, signatures, and recordkeeping in private 
commerce by establishing legal equivalence between traditional paper-
based methods and electronic methods.
    The GPEA defines an electronic signature as a method of signing an 
electronic communication that: (a) Identifies and authenticates a 
particular person as the source of the electronic communication; and 
(b) indicates such person's approval of the information contained in 
the electronic communication (section 1710(1)). It also requires 
Federal agencies to provide individuals and entities the options of: 
(a) Submitting information or transacting with the agency 
electronically; and (b) using electronic records retention when 
practicable. The GPEA states that electronic records and their related 
electronic signatures shall not be denied legal effect, validity or 
enforceability merely because they are in electronic form. It also 
encourages agencies to use electronic signature alternatives (sections 
1704, 1707).
    For any transaction in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce, 
E-SIGN supersedes all pre-existing requirements that paper records be 
kept so long as: (a) Such records are generated in commercial, 
consumer, and business transactions between private parties; and (b) 
those parties consent to using electronic methods. Specifically, the 
statute establishes the legal equivalence for the following types of 
documents, whether in traditional paper or electronic form: (a) 
Contracts, (b) signatures, and (c) other legally-required documents (15 
U.S.C. 7001(a)(1)).
    In response to Presidential E.O. 13563, issued January 18, 2011, 
``Improving Regulation and Regulatory Review'' (76 FR 3821, January 21, 
2011), DOT published a request for comments in the Federal Register (76 
FR 8940, February 16, 2011). It requested comments on a plan for 
reviewing existing rules, as well as identification of existing rules 
that DOT should review because they may be outmoded, ineffective, 
insufficient, or excessively burdensome. As a result of that notice and 
review, this amendment to regulations was placed on the list of 
opportunities to relieve the public burden.

V. Section-by-Section Analysis

A. Part 370

49 CFR 370.3
    The Agency proposes non-substantive changes to this section to 
conform to the proposed definition of ``written or in writing'' at 
Sec.  390.5, which would eliminate the distinction between paper and 
electronic methods of communication. Currently, Sec.  370.3 
distinguishes between ``written'' and ``electronic'' communications; 
however, under the proposed definition of ``written or in writing,'' 
there is no such distinction. The proposed changes would incorporate 
both paper-based and electronic communications into the meaning of the 
terms ``written or in writing.'' Thus, ``written'' documentation could 
mean written on paper or written electronically.
    In today's commercial and legal environment, the term ``written'' 
no longer necessarily means ``on paper.'' To the contrary, it can mean 
paper-based or electronic communications. Because ``written or in 
writing'' would mean either paper or electronic communications, FMCSA 
proposes to remove reference to electronic methods to eliminate 
redundancy and confusion. These changes would not mean, however, that 
parties are prohibited from using electronic methods. All parties would 
remain free to conduct their business using either paper or electronic 
means of documentation and communication.
49 CFR 370.5
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  370.5.
49 CFR 370.9
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  370.9.

B. Part 371

49 CFR 371.109
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  371.109.
49 CFR 371.111
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  371.111.

C. Part 373

    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  373.103. In addition, FMCSA 
proposes to remove references to ``original'' documents to reflect the 
practical reality that there is no real distinction between originals 
and copies of electronic documents. Moreover, these changes conform to 
the proposed changes at Sec.  390.31 which permit parties to maintain 
accurate copies in lieu of originals. FMCSA has determined that in 
today's commercial and legal environment, it does not need access to 
these original documents in order to discharge its regulatory 
responsibilities as long as the parties maintain accurate copies that 
otherwise meet the Agency's requirements.

D. Part 375

49 CFR 375.209
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation in Sec.  375.209.
49 CFR 375.213
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation in Sec.  375.213.
49 CFR 375.505
    The proposed changes to Sec.  375.505 would make clear that when a 
household goods motor carrier transports a shipment on a collection-
delivery basis, notification of the charges can be made using the 
following methods of communication: fax, email, overnight courier, and 
certified mail, or return receipt requested.

[[Page 23309]]

E. Part 376

49 CFR 376.11
    Currently, Sec.  376.11(b)(1) includes outdated language specifying 
that receipts for leased equipment may be transmitted by mail, 
telegraph, or similar means of communication. FMCSA proposes to amend 
this section by removing all reference to the method of transmitting 
receipts, thereby leaving the parties the freedom to choose their own 
medium of communication.
    In paragraph (d)(1), FMCSA proposes to eliminate reference to 
``papers,'' replacing the term with the word ``documents.'' This change 
recognizes that the records this section requires motor carriers to 
maintain may be generated or maintained using traditional paper or 
electronic methods and eliminates any suggestion that the documentation 
must be in paper form.
49 CFR 376.12
    In paragraph (f) of Sec.  376.12, FMCSA proposes to eliminate 
references to ``paperwork,'' replacing the term with the word 
``documentation,'' for the same reasons explained in the discussion of 
Sec.  376.11(d)(1), above.
    In paragraph (g), FMCSA proposes to eliminate outdated references 
to computer generated documents to eliminate the distinction between 
electronic and manually generated documents. In today's business and 
legal environment, there is no need to afford special treatment to 
computer generated documentation; eliminating this special treatment 
establishes technological neutrality in this section. These changes 
would not mean, however, that parties are prohibited from using 
computers to generate the documents required in this section. To the 
contrary, all parties would remain free to conduct their business using 
the technology they choose, as long as it otherwise meets the Agency's 
requirements.
    In paragraph (l), FMCSA proposes to eliminate references to 
originals and copies of documents for the same reasons explained in the 
discussion of Sec.  373.103, above.

F. Part 378

49 CFR 378.3
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
communication in Sec.  378.3.
49 CFR 378.4
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  378.4.
49 CFR 378.5
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
communication in Sec.  378.5.
49 CFR 378.6
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation in Sec.  378.6.
49 CFR 378.7
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  378.7.
49 CFR 378.8
    For the same reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  370.3, 
FMCSA proposes to remove references to electronic methods of 
documentation and communication in Sec.  378.8.

G. Part 379

49 CFR 379.5
    Section 379.5 requires motor carriers to protect records required 
under FMCSA's regulations from damage or loss. The current language in 
paragraph (a) is outdated in that it refers to physical damage that 
generally applies only to paper records. FMCSA proposes to update this 
paragraph by changing it to require motor carriers to protect records 
against destruction, deterioration, and data corruption. This change 
reflects the importance of maintaining the integrity of records 
regardless of the method used to maintain them.
49 CFR 379.7
    Section 379.7 currently contains outdated record preservation 
language that does not take into account the use of computers and 
modern technology. FMCSA proposes to replace this language with new 
language that permits companies to preserve records using any 
technology that accurately reflects all of the information in the 
record and remains accessible for later use in accordance with the 
Agency's record keeping requirements. These proposed changes conform to 
the requirements for electronic methods proposed in new Sec.  390.32.
49 CFR part 379 Appendix A
    FMCSA proposes to eliminate references to ``papers'' in Appendix A, 
replacing the term with the word ``documents'' for the same reasons 
explained in the discussion of Sec.  376.11(d)(1), above.

H. Part 387

49 CFR 387.7
    Paragraph (b)(1) of Sec.  387.7 requires insurers and motor 
carriers to give 35 days' notice prior to cancelling the financial 
responsibility policies required in Sec.  387.9. Currently, this 
section establishes mail as the only method of communicating 
cancellations. FMCSA proposes to amend this section by replacing the 
word ``mailed'' with the more technologically neutral term 
``transmitted,'' and ``Proof of mailing'' with ``Proof of transmittal'' 
thus establishing parity between mailing and other methods of 
transmission as proof of cancellation.
49 CFR 387.31
    FMCSA proposes to amend Sec.  387.31(b)(1) by replacing the term 
``mailed'' with ``transmitted,'' and ``Proof of mailing'' with ``Proof 
of transmittal''for the reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  
387.7, above.

I. Part 389

49 CFR 389.19
    Currently, Sec.  389.19 requires members of the public who submit a 
petition for an extention of time within which to submit comments to a 
rulemaking to do so in duplicate. This language is outdated because 
members of the public have the option of submitting electronic or paper 
petitions and there is no need to submit multiple electronic copies. In 
addition, FMCSA no longer requires multiple paper copies to process 
these requests. As a result, FMCSA proposes to eliminate the 
requirement that these petitions be filed in duplicate.
49 CFR 389.21
    Currently, Sec.  389.21 requires members of the public who wish to 
comment on a rulemaking to submit five copies of those comments. For 
the reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  389.19, above, FMCSA 
proposes to eliminate the requirement that multiple copies be filed.
49 CFR 389.31
    Currently, Sec.  389.31(b)(1) requires members of the public to 
submit petitions for rulemaking in duplicate. For the reasons explained 
in the discussion of Sec.  389.19, above, FMCSA proposes to eliminate 
the requirement that multiple copies be filed.

[[Page 23310]]

49 CFR 389.35
    Currently Sec.  389.35 requires members of the public to submit 
five copies of a petition for reconsideration. For the reasons 
explained in the discussion of Sec.  389.19, above, FMCSA proposes to 
eliminate the requirement that multiple copies be filed.

J. Part 390

49 CFR 390.5
    FMCSA proposes to add a definition of ``written or in writing'' to 
Sec.  390.5. The new definition would be technologically neutral and 
would include anything typed, handwritten, or printed on a tangible 
medium, such as paper, as well as anything typed or generated 
electronically, as long as it otherwise meets the new standards 
proposed in Sec.  390.32. This definition would establish technological 
neutrality through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulations 
(FMCSRs) and eliminate any distinction between paper and electronic 
documentation as being ``written or in writing.''
49 CFR 390.7
    FMCSA proposes to remove the outdated explanation of the term 
``writing'' from the rules of construction in Sec.  390.7(b)(2). As 
explained above, FMCSA proposes to include a new definition of 
``written or in writing'' in Sec.  390.5.
49 CFR 390.31
    Revised Sec.  390.31 would permit persons or entities subject to 
document retention requirements to keep copies in lieu of originals. 
This change would remove reference to microfilm as the only acceptable 
method for storing such copies. It would also remove the prohibition on 
using computer technology to maintain documents with signatures. This 
change would provide the flexibility to choose the type of 
recordkeeping and storage that best suits a person's or entity's 
capacities and business needs. To comply with the requirements of this 
section, copies must be legible; anyone entitled to inspect them must 
be able to view and read the content required to be in the record. The 
requirement that the Agency be able to inspect records applies 
regardless of whether the copy is in paper or electronic form.
49 CFR 390.32
    New Sec.  390.32 would permit any person or entity to use 
electronic methods to comply with any provision in chapter III of 
subtitle B of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR parts 300-
399) that requires a document to be signed, certified, generated, 
maintained or exchanged. It would apply to all forms of written 
documentation, including forms, records, notations and other documents. 
This would establish parity between paper and electronic documents and 
signatures, greatly expanding interested parties' ability to use 
electronic methods to comply with FMCSA's requirements.
    Paragraph (a) would specify that the rule would apply only to 
documents that FMCSA requires entities or individuals to retain, 
regardless of whether the Agency subsequently requires them to be 
produced or displayed at the request of an FMCSA official or other 
parties entitled to access. It would not apply to documents that 
individuals or entities are required to file directly with the Agency. 
For more information about electronic filing methods for documents 
filed directly with FMCSA, interested parties can consult specific 
program information on FMCSA's Web site (www.fmcsa.dot.gov).
    Paragraph (b) would permit, but not require, anyone to satisfy 
FMCSA requirements by using electronic methods to generate, maintain or 
exchange documents. The substance of the document would otherwise have 
to comply with applicable Federal laws and Agency rules.
    Paragraph (c) would permit, but not require, anyone required to 
sign or certify a document to do so using electronic signatures. The 
rule would define an electronic signature as a method of signing an 
electronic communication that: (1) Identifies and authenticates a 
particular person as the source of the electronic communication; and 
(2) indicates such person's approval of the information contained in 
the electronic communication. The rule would specify that a person may 
use any available technology so long as the signature otherwise 
complies with FMCSA's requirements.
    Paragraph (d) would establish the minimum requirements for 
electronic documents and signatures. Any electronic document or 
signature would be considered the legal equivalent of a paper document 
or signature if it is the functional equivalent with respect to 
integrity, accuracy and accessibility. In other words, the electronic 
documents or signatures would have to be legible as well as accurately 
and reliably reflect the information in the record. They would have to 
remain accessible in a form that could be accurately viewed or 
reproduced according to Agency rules.
    Electronic documents would not be considered the legal equivalent 
of traditional paper documents if they are not capable of being 
retained and accurately reproduced for reference by any individual or 
entity entitled to access by law, for the period of time required by 
the Agency's recordkeeping requirements. For example, if Agency rules 
require that a document be produced upon demand, the individual or 
entity must be able to provide the Agency with an accurate copy of the 
electronic record upon demand. Similarly, if Agency rules require that 
a document be produced to the Agency within 48 hours, the individual or 
entity would have to provide the Agency with an accurate copy of the 
electronic record within 48 hours. The person inspecting the document 
must be able to view and read the content of that electronic record. As 
with any documents, paper or electronic, documents that are not 
legible--for any reason--do not satisfy the Agency's requirements.
    This proposed rule would not apply to other agencies' rules, even 
if FMCSA requires compliance with those rules. For example, some of 
FMCSA's regulations cross-reference other agencies' rules, such as 
those related to drug and alcohol testing (49 CFR part 40) and 
hazardous materials (49 CFR parts 105-109). This proposed rule would 
not apply to those requirements. In addition, if a motor carrier is 
operating in a foreign country, it must follow the rules that apply in 
that country.

K. Part 391

    Currently, 49 CFR 391.55 requires each motor carrier to maintain a 
``photographic'' copy of a Longer Combination Vehicle driver-
instructor's commercial driver's license. But current technology for 
reproducing documents is not limited to photographic methods; other 
methods for capturing digital images also exist. As a result, FMCSA 
proposes to remove the word ``photographic'' to make this section 
technologically neutral. Motor carriers would still be required to 
maintain a copy of the Longer Combination Vehicle driver-instructor's 
commercial driver's license, but they would be free to choose the 
method of making that copy.

L. Part 395

49 CFR 395.8
    Currently, Sec.  395.8(f)(2) requires that records of duty status 
(RODS) be made in the driver's own handwriting. Recognizing that many 
drivers and motor carriers prefer to use electronic RODS, including 
electronic signatures, FMCSA proposes to remove the requirement that 
RODS be in the driver's own handwriting. But drivers would still be 
required to make their

[[Page 23311]]

own entries; and those entries would have to be legible, regardless of 
the medium used to record them. This change would permit drivers to 
choose whether to use electronic or handwritten entries and signatures. 
For example, a driver could make RODS entries in his or her own 
handwriting with a handwritten signature; electronically with an 
electronic signature; or typed and printed with a handwritten 
signature.
    Currently, paragraph (i) requires drivers to submit or mail their 
RODS to employers within 13 days. Recognizing that many drivers and 
motor carriers prefer to use electronic or other methods to submit 
RODS, FMCSA proposes to remove the reference to mail. Drivers would 
still be required to submit RODS to employers within 13 days, however, 
they would be free to choose the method of submission as long as the 
documents submitted otherwise meet FMCSA's requirements.
49 CFR 395.15
    Currently, Sec.  395.15 (b)(2) permits use of automatic on-board 
recording devices (AOBRDs) in conjunction with handwritten or printed 
RODS. Recognizing that many drivers and motor carriers prefer to use 
electronic means of recording duty status, FMCSA proposes to remove 
reference to handwritten or printed RODS. The proposed changes would 
permit drivers and motor carriers to use RODS maintained in other media 
in conjunction with AOBRDs as long as they otherwise meet FMCSA's 
requirements.
    Currently, paragraph (b)(4) requires a driver to have the previous 
7 consecutive days of RODS available for inspection and specifies that 
those RODS can be from an AOBRD, handwritten records, computer 
generated records, or any combination thereof. FMCSA proposes to make 
this section technologically neutral by removing reference to 
handwritten and computer generated records. Drivers would still be 
permitted to use handwritten or computer generated records, but they 
would be free to choose any medium for maintaining these records that 
otherwise meets FMCSA's requirements.
    Currently, paragraph (b)(5) references ``hard copies'' of the RODS 
documents described in paragraph (b)(4). FMCSA proposes to remove 
reference to ``hard copies'' for the same reasons explained in the 
discussion of paragraph (b)(4), above.
    In paragraph (e), FMCSA proposes to remove the requirement that 
RODS be made in a driver's own handwriting for the reasons explained in 
the discussion of Sec.  395.8(f)(2), above.
    In paragraph (f), FMCSA proposes to remove the requirement that 
RODS be made in a driver's own handwriting for the reasons explained in 
the discussion of Sec.  395.8(f)(2), above.
    In paragraph (h), FMCSA proposes to remove the requirement that 
RODS be submitted to employers via mail for the same reasons explained 
in the discussion of Sec.  395.8(i), above.
    In the introduction to paragraph (i), FMCSA proposes to remove 
reference to handwritten RODS for the reasons explained in the 
discussion of Sec.  395.8(f)(2), above. In paragraphs (i)(4) and (7), 
FMCSA proposes to remove outdated language applicable to AOBRDs 
installed before October 31, 1988. FMCSA does not believe that AOBRDs 
installed before this date are still in use. As such, this language is 
no longer necessary.

M. Part 396

49 CFR 396.11
    FMCSA proposes to remove all uses of the word ``original'' in this 
section for the reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  373.103, 
above.
49 CFR 396.12
    FMCSA proposes to remove the word ``original'' in this section for 
the reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  373.103, above.

N. Part 398

    FMCSA proposes to remove the requirement in 49 CFR 398.3 that 
certain documents must be ``photographically reproduced'' for the same 
reasons explained in the discussion of Sec.  391.55, above.

VI. Rulemaking Analysis

E.O. 12866 (Regulatory Planning and Review and DOT Regulatory Policies 
and Procedures as Supplemented by E.O. 13563)

    FMCSA has determined that this action is not a ``significant 
regulatory action'' under E.O. 12866 as supplemented by E.O. 13563 (76 
FR 3821, January 18, 2011), or within the meaning of the DOT regulatory 
policies and procedures (44 FR 1103, February 26, 1979). The Agency 
believes that this proposed rule would not impose new costs on the 
industry since carriers are allowed to choose to continue to handle 
documents as they had before. The proposed rule would not impose new 
requirements on the industry; it would simply codify existing 
regulatory guidance and remove outdated and obsolete references in the 
regulatory text. The benefits of the rule would stem from savings in 
paper and printing expense and other efficiency gains. Examples of 
documents affected by this rule are vehicle maintenance records, driver 
qualification files, and business records. There is no way to estimate 
how many carriers would change their practices given the options, or 
how many documents would be affected. Neither the benefits nor the 
costs of this rule can be reliably estimated. The Agency does not 
believe that the economic costs of the rule, if any, would exceed the 
$100 million threshold for economic significance. It is clear, however, 
that this proposed rule would be expected to provide considerable 
flexibility and relief to the industry.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    The Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) 
requires Federal agencies to consider the effects of the regulatory 
action on small business and other small entities and to minimize any 
significant economic impact. The term ``small entities'' comprises 
small businesses and not-for-profit organizations that are 
independently owned and operated and are not dominant in their fields, 
and governmental jurisdictions with a population of less than 50,000.
    Accordingly, DOT policy requires an analysis of the impact of all 
regulations on small entities, and mandates that agencies strive to 
lessen any adverse effects on these businesses. Under the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, as amended by the Small Business Regulatory 
Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121, 110 Stat. 857), the 
proposed rule is not expected to have a significant economic impact on 
a substantial number of small entities. Consequently, I certify the 
proposed action would not have a significant economic impact on a 
substantial number of small entities. FMCSA invites comment from 
members of the public who believe there will be a significant impact 
either on small businesses or on governmental jurisdictions with a 
population of less than 50,000.

Assistance for Small Entities

    Under section 213(a) of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement 
Fairness Act of 1996 (Pub. L. 104-121), FMCSA wants to assist small 
entities in understanding this proposed rule so that they can better 
evaluate its effects on them and participate in the rulemaking 
initiative. If the proposed rule would affect your small business, 
organization, or governmental jurisdiction and you have questions 
concerning its provisions or options for compliance,

[[Page 23312]]

please consult the FMCSA point of contact, Genevieve Sapir, listed in 
the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this proposed rule.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

    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 State, local, or tribal government, in 
the aggregate, or by the private sector of $151.0 million (which is the 
2012 value of $100 million in 1995 dollars after adjusting for 
inflation) or more in any 1 year. As far as determined, this proposed 
rule would not result in any such expenditure.

National Environmental Policy Act and Clean Air Act

    FMCSA analyzed this NPRM for the purpose of the National 
Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) and 
determined under its environmental procedures Order 5610.1, published 
February 24, 2004 (69 FR 9680), that this proposed action does not have 
any effect on the quality of the environment. Therefore, this NPRM is 
categorically excluded from further analysis and documentation in an 
environmental assessment or environmental impact statement under FMCSA 
Order 5610.1, paragraphs 6(q) and (y). A Categorical Exclusion 
determination is available for inspection or copying in the 
regulations.gov Web site listed under ADDRESSES.
    In addition to the NEPA requirements, the Clean Air Act (CAA) as 
amended (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.) also requires FMCSA to analyze the 
potential impact of its actions on air quality and to ensure that FMCSA 
actions conform to State and local air quality implementation plans. No 
additional contributions to air emissions are expected from this 
proposed rule, and FMCSA expects the rule to not be subject to the 
Environmental Protection Agency's General Conformity Rule (40 CFR parts 
51 and 93).
    FMCSA seeks comment on these determinations.

E.O. 12898 (Environmental Justice)

    FMCSA evaluated the environmental effects of this proposed rule in 
accordance with E.O. 12898 and determined that there are no 
environmental justice issues associated with its provisions nor any 
collective environmental impact resulting from its promulgation. 
Environmental justice issues would be raised if there were 
``disproportionate'' and ``high and adverse impact'' on minority or 
low-income populations. None of the alternatives analyzed in the 
Agency's environmental assessment, discussed under National 
Environmental Policy Act, would result in high and adverse 
environmental impacts.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This proposed rule would call for no new collection of information 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501-3520). The 
rulemaking would likely provide a reduction in information collections. 
However,the Agency is unable to calculate those reductions because 
there is no way to estimate how many carriers would change their 
practices given the option and how many documents that would affect. 
The Agency requests comments on this issue.

E.O. 12630 (Taking of Private Property)

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

E.O. 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

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

E.O. 13045 (Protection of Children)

    E.O. 13045, ``Protection of Children from Environmental Health 
Risks and Safety Risks'' (April 23, 1997, 62 FR 19885), requires that 
agencies issuing economically significant rules, which also concern an 
environmental health or safety risk that an Agency has reason to 
believe may disproportionately affect children, must include an 
evaluation of the environmental health and safety effects of the 
regulation on children. Section 5 of E.O. 13045 directs an Agency to 
submit for a covered regulatory action an evaluation of its 
environmental health or safety effects on children. The FMCSA has 
determined that this rule is not a covered regulatory action as defined 
under E.O. 13045. This determination is based on the fact that this 
proposal would not constitute an environmental health risk or safety 
risk that would disproportionately affect children.

E.O. 13132 (Federalism)

    A rule has implications for federalism under E.O. 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 States or localities. FMCSA has analyzed 
this rule under that Order and has determined that it does not have 
implications for federalism.

E.O. 12372 (Intergovernmental Review)

    The regulations implementing E.O. 12372 regarding intergovernmental 
consultation on Federal programs and activities do not apply to this 
program.

E.O. 13175 (Consultation and Coordination With Indian Tribal 
Governments)

    FMCSA analyzed this rulemaking in accordance with the principles 
and criteria in E.O. 13175, Consultation and Coordination With Indian 
Tribal Governments. This rulemaking is required by law and does not 
significantly or uniquely affect the communities of the Indian tribal 
governments or impose substantial direct compliance costs on tribal 
governments. Thus, the funding and consultation requirements of E.O. 
13175 do not apply and no tribal summary impact statement is required.

E.O. 13211 (Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use)

    The FMCSA has analyzed this rule under E.O. 13211, ``Actions 
Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, 
Distribution, or Use.'' This proposed rule is not a significant energy 
action within the meaning of section 4(b) of the E.O. This proposed 
rule is a procedural action, is not economically significant, and does 
not have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or 
use of energy.

Privacy Impact Assessment

    Section 522 of title I of division H of the Consolidated 
Appropriations Act, 2005, enacted December 8, 2004 (Pub. L. 108-447, 
118 Stat. 2809, 3268, 5 U.S.C. 552a note), requires the Agency to 
conduct a privacy impact assessment of a regulation that will affect 
the privacy of individuals. This proposed rule would not require the 
collection of any personally identifiable information.
    The Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a) applies only to Federal agencies 
and any non-Federal agency which receives records contained in a system 
of records from a Federal agency for use in a matching program. FMCSA 
has determined this proposed rule would not result in a new or revised 
Privacy Act System of Records for FMCSA.

E-Government Act of 2002

    The E-Government Act of 2002, Public Law 107-347, section 208, 116 
Stat. 2899, 2921 (Dec. 17, 2002),

[[Page 23313]]

requires Federal agencies to conduct a privacy impact assessment for 
new or substantially changed technology that collects, maintains, or 
disseminates information in an identifiable form. No new or 
substantially changed technology would collect, maintain, or 
disseminate information as a result of this rule. As a result, FMCSA 
has not conducted a privacy impact assessment.

National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (Technical Standards)

    The National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act (NTTAA) (15 
U.S.C. 272 note) directs agencies to use voluntary consensus standards 
in their regulatory activities unless the agency provides Congress, 
through OMB, with an explanation of why using these standards would be 
inconsistent with applicable law or otherwise impractical. Voluntary 
consensus standards (e.g., specifications of materials, performance, 
design, or operation; test methods; sampling procedures; and related 
management systems practices) are standards that are developed or 
adopted by voluntary consensus standards bodies. This proposed rule 
does not use technical standards. Therefore, we did not consider the 
use of voluntary consensus standards.

List of Subjects

49 CFR Part 370

    Freight forwarders, Investigations, Motor carriers.

49 CFR Part 371

    Brokers, Motor carriers, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 373

    Buses, Freight, Freight forwarders, Motor carriers, Moving of 
household goods.

49 CFR Part 375

    Advertising, Consumer protection, Freight, Highways and roads, 
Insurance, Motor carriers, Moving of household goods, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 376

    Motor carriers, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 378

    Freight forwarders, Investigations, Motor carriers, Moving of 
household goods.

49 CFR Part 379

    Freight forwarders, Maritime carriers, Motor carriers, Moving of 
household goods, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 387

    Buses, Freight, Freight forwarders, Hazardous materials 
transportation, Highway safety, Insurance, Intergovernmental relations, 
Motor carriers, Motor vehicle safety, Moving of household goods, 
Penalties, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Surety bonds.

49 CFR Part 389

    Administrative practice and procedure, Highway safety, Motor 
carriers, Motor vehicle safety.

49 CFR Part 390

    Highway safety, Intermodal transportation, Motor carriers, Motor 
vehicle safety, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 391

    Alcohol abuse, Drug abuse, Drug testing, Highway safety, Motor 
carriers, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements, Safety, 
Transportation.

49 CFR Part 395

    Highway safety, Motor carriers, Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements.

49 CFR Part 396

    Highway safety, Motor carriers, Motor vehicle safety, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements.

49 CFR Part 398

    Highway safety, Migrant labor, Motor carriers, Motor vehicle 
safety, Reporting and recordkeeping requirements.

    For the reasons stated in the preamble, FMCSA proposes to amend 49 
CFR, chapter III, to read as follows:

PART 370--PRINCIPLES AND PRACTICES FOR THE INVESTIGATION AND 
VOLUNTARY DISPOSITION OF LOSS AND DAMAGE CLAIMS AND PROCESSING 
SALVAGE

0
1. The authority citation for part 370 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301 and 14706; and 49 CFR 1.87.


Sec.  370.3  [Amended]

0
2. Amend Sec.  370.3 as follows:
0
a. Remove the words ``or electronic'' from paragraph (b), and
0
b. Remove the phrase ``where claims are electronically handled,'' from 
paragraph (b)(3).


Sec.  370.5  [Amended]

0
3. Amend Sec.  370.5(a) as follows:
0
a. Remove the phrase ``or by electronic transmission'', and
0
b. Remove both instances of the words ``or electronically''.


Sec.  370.9  [Amended]

0
4. Amend Sec.  370.9(a) as follows:
0
a. Remove the phrase ``or electronically transmitted'', and
0
b. Remove both additional instances of the words ``or electronically''.

PART 371--BROKERS OF PROPERTY

0
5. The authority citation for part 371 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301, 13501, and 14122; subtitle B, title 
IV of Pub. L. 109-59; and 49 CFR 1.87.


Sec.  371.109  [Amended]

0
6. Amend Sec.  371.109 as follows:
0
a. Remove the last sentence in paragraph (a), and
0
b. Remove the last sentence in paragraph (b).


Sec.  371.111  [Amended]

0
7. Amend Sec.  371.111(c) by removing the words ``electronic or 
paper''.

PART 373--RECEIPTS AND BILLS

0
8. The authority citation for part 373 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301, 13531 and 14706; and 49 CFR 1.87.

0
9. Amend Sec.  373.103 by revising the undesignated paragraphs 
following paragraphs (a)(11) and (b)(11) to read as follows:


Sec.  373.103  Expense bills.

    (a) * * *
    (11) * * *
    The shipper or receiver owing the charges shall be given the 
freight or expense bill and the carrier shall keep a copy as prescribed 
at 49 CFR part 379.
    (b) * * *
    (11) * * *
    The carrier shall keep a copy of all expense bills issued for the 
period prescribed at 49 CFR part 379. If any expense bill is spoiled, 
voided, or unused for any reason, a written record of its disposition 
shall be retained for a like period.

PART 375--TRANSPORTATION OF HOUSEHOLD GOODS IN INTERSTATE COMMERCE; 
CONSUMER PROTECTION REGULATIONS

0
10. The authority citation for part 375 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13102, 13301, 13501, 13704, 13707, 13902, 
14104, 14706, 14708; subtitle B, title IV of Pub. L. 109-59; and 49 
CFR 1.87.


[[Page 23314]]


0
11. Amend Sec.  375.209 by revising paragraph (b)(3) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  375.209  How must I handle complaints and inquires?

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (3) A system for recording in writing all inquiries and complaints 
received from an individual shipper by any means of communication.
* * * * *


Sec.  375.213  [Amended]

0
12. Amend paragraph (e)(2) of Sec.  375.213 by removing the words 
``electronic or paper''.
0
13. Amend Sec.  375.505 by revising paragraph (b)(5) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  375.505  Must I write up a bill of lading?

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (5) When you transport on a collect-on-delivery basis, the name, 
address, and if furnished, the telephone number, fax number, or email 
address of a person to notify about the charges. The notification may 
be made by fax transmission; email; overnight courier; or certified 
mail, return receipt requested.
* * * * *

PART 376--LEASE AND INTERCHANGE OF VEHICLES

0
14. The authority citation for part 376 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301 and 14102; and 49 CFR 1.87.


Sec.  376.11  [Amended]

0
15. Amend Sec.  376.11 as follows:
0
a. Remove the last sentence in paragraph (b)(1);
0
b. Remove the word ``papers'' and add in its place ``documents'' in the 
third and fourth sentences of paragraph (d)(1); and
0
c. Remove the words ``or papers'' from the fifth sentence of paragraph 
(d)(1).
0
16. Amend Sec.  376.12 by revising paragraphs (f), (g), and (l) to read 
as follows:


Sec.  376.12  Written lease requirements.

* * * * *
    (f) Payment period. The lease shall specify that payment to the 
lessor shall be made within 15 days after submission of the necessary 
delivery documents concerning a trip in the service of the authorized 
carrier. The documentation required before the lessor can receive 
payment is limited to log books required by the Department of 
Transportation and those documents necessary for the authorized carrier 
to secure payment from the shipper. In addition, the lease may provide 
that, upon termination of the lease agreement, as a condition precedent 
to payment, the lessor shall remove all identification devices of the 
authorized carrier and, except in the case of identification painted 
directly on equipment, return them to the carrier. If the 
identification device has been lost or stolen, a letter certifying its 
removal will satisfy this requirement. Until this requirement is 
complied with, the carrier may withhold final payment. The authorized 
carrier may require the submission of additional documents by the 
lessor but not as a prerequisite to payment. Payment to the lessor 
shall not be made contingent upon submission of a bill of lading to 
which no exceptions have been taken. The authorized carrier shall not 
set time limits for the submission by the lessor of required delivery 
documents.
    (g) Copies of freight bill or other form of freight documentation. 
When a lessor's revenue is based on a percentage of the gross revenue 
for a shipment, the lease must specify that the authorized carrier will 
give the lessor, before or at the time of settlement, a copy of the 
rated freight bill, or, in the case of contract carriers, any other 
form of documentation actually used for a shipment containing the same 
information that would appear on a rated freight bill. Regardless of 
the method of compensation, the lease must permit lessor to examine 
copies of the carrier's tariff or, in the case of contract carriers, 
other documents from which rates and charges are computed, provided 
that where rates and charges are computed from a contract of a contract 
carrier, only those portions of the contract containing the same 
information that would appear on a rated freight bill need be 
disclosed. The authorized carrier may delete the names of shippers and 
consignees shown on the freight bill or other form of documentation.
* * * * *
    (l) Copies of the lease. The parties must sign the lease. The 
authorized carrier shall keep a copy and shall place another copy of 
the lease on the equipment during the period of the lease unless a 
statement as provided for in Sec.  376.11(c)(2) is carried on the 
equipment instead. The owner of the equipment shall keep a copy of the 
lease.
* * * * *

PART 378--PROCEDURES GOVERNING THE PROCESSING, INVESTIGATION, AND 
DISPOSITION OF OVERCHARGE, DUPLICATE PAYMENT, OR OVERCOLLECTION 
CLAIMS

0
17. The authority citation for part 378 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13321, 14101, 14704 and 14705; and 49 CFR 
1.87.


Sec.  378.3  [Amended]

0
18. Amend Sec.  378.3(a) by removing the words ``or electronically 
communicated (when agreed to by the carrier and shipper or receiver 
involved)'' from the first sentence.
0
19. Amend Sec.  378.4 by revising the introductory text of paragraph 
(b) and paragraph (c) to read as follows:


Sec.  378.4  Documentation of claims.

* * * * *
    (b) Claims for overcharge shall be accompanied by the original 
freight bill. Additional information may include, but is not limited 
to, the following:
* * * * *
    (c) Claims for duplicate payment and overcollection shall be 
accompanied by the original freight bill(s) for which charges were paid 
and by freight bill payment information.
* * * * *


Sec.  378.5  [Amended]

0
20. Amend Sec.  378.5(c) by removing the words ``or electronically 
transmitted''.


Sec.  378.6  [Amended]

0
21. Amend Sec.  378.6 by removing the words ``or electronic''.
0
22. Revise Sec.  378.7 to read as follows:


Sec.  378.7  Acknowledgment of claims.

    Upon receipt of a written claim, the carrier shall acknowledge its 
receipt in writing to the claimant within 30 days after the date of 
receipt except when the carrier shall have paid or declined in writing 
within that period. The carrier shall include the date of receipt in 
its written claim which shall be placed in the file for that claim.
0
23. Revise Sec.  378.8 to read as follows:


Sec.  378.8  Disposition of claims.

    The processing carrier shall pay, decline to pay, or settle each 
written claim within 60 days after its receipt by that carrier, except 
where the claimant and the carrier agree in writing to a specific 
extension based upon extenuating circumstances. If the carrier declines 
to pay a claim or makes settlement in an amount different from that 
sought, the carrier shall notify the claimant in writing of the 
reason(s) for its action, citing tariff authority or other

[[Page 23315]]

pertinent information developed as a result of its investigation.

PART 379--PRESERVATION OF RECORDS

0
24. The authority citation for part 379 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301, 14122 and 14123; and 49 CFR 1.87.

0
25. Revise Sec.  379.5(a) to read as follows:


Sec.  379.5  Protection and storage of records.

    (a) The company shall protect records subject to this part from 
destruction, deterioration, and data corruption.
* * * * *
0
26. Revise Sec.  379.7 to read as follows:


Sec.  379.7  Preservation of records.

    (a) All records may be preserved by any technology that accurately 
reflects all of the information in the record and remains accessible in 
a form that can be accurately reproduced later for reference.
    (b) Common information, such as instructions, need not be preserved 
for each record as long as it is common to all such forms and an 
identified specimen of the form is maintained for reference.

Appendix A to Part 379 [Amended]

0
27. Amend Appendix A by removing the word ``papers'' wherever it 
appears and adding in its place the word ``documents''.

PART 387--MINIMUM LEVELS OF FINANCIAL RESPONSIBILITY FOR MOTOR 
CARRIERS

0
28. The authority citation for part 387 is revised to read as follows:

    Authority: 49 U.S.C. 13101, 13301, 13906, 13908, 14701, 31138, 
and 31139; and 49 CFR 1.87.

0
29. Revise Sec.  387.7(b)(1) to read as follows:


Sec.  387.7  Financial responsibility required.

* * * * *
    (b)(1) Policies of insurance, surety bonds, and endorsements 
required under this section shall remain in effect continuously until 
terminated. Cancellation may be effected by the insurer or the insured 
motor carrier giving 35 days' notice in writing to the other. The 35 
days' notice shall commence to run from the date the notice is 
transmitted. Proof of transmission shall be sufficient proof of notice.
* * * * *
0
30. Revise Sec.  387.31(b)(1) to read as follows:


Sec.  387.31  Financial responsibility required.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (1) Cancellation may be effected by the insurer or the insured 
motor carrier giving 35 days notice in writing to the other. The 35 
days notice shall commence to run from the date the notice is 
transmitted. Proof of transmission shall be sufficient proof of notice.
* * * * *


Sec.  387.313  [Amended]

0
31. Amend Sec.  387.313(b) by removing the words ``in triplicate''.

PART 389--RULEMAKING PROCEDURES--FEDERAL MOTOR CARRIER SAFETY 
REGULATIONS

0
32. The authority citation for part 389 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 113, 501 et seq., subchapters I and III of 
chapter 311, chapter 313, and 31502; 42 U.S.C. 4917; and 49 CFR 
1.87.


Sec.  389.19  [Amended]

0
33. Amend Sec.  389.19 by removing the words ``in duplicate''.


Sec.  389.21  [Amended]

0
34. Amend Sec.  389.21 by removing the phrase ``and submitted in five 
(5) legible copies, unless the number of copies is specified in the 
notice''.


Sec.  389.31  [Amended]

0
35. Amend Sec.  389.31(b)(1) by removing the words ``in duplicate''.


Sec.  389.35  [Amended]

0
36. Amend Sec.  389.35(a) by removing the words ``in five (5) legible 
copies''.

PART 390--FEDERAL MOTOR CARRIER SAFETY REGULATIONS; GENERAL

0
37. The authority citation for part 390 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 504, 508, 31132, 31133, 31136, 31144, 
31151, 31502; sec. 114, Pub. L. 103-311, 108 Stat. 1673, 1677-1678; 
sec. 212, 217, 229, Pub. L. 106-159, 113 Stat. 1748, 1766, 1767; 
sec. 229, Pub. L. 106-159 (as transferred by sec. 4114 and amended 
by secs. 4130-4132, Pub. L. 109-59, 119 Stat. 1144, 1726, 1743-
1744); sec. 4136, Pub. L. 109-59, 119 Stat. 114, 1745; sections 
32101(d) and 34934, Pub. L. 112-141, 126 Stat. 405, 778, 830; and 49 
CFR 1.87.

0
38. Amend Sec.  390.5 by adding a definition of ``Written or in 
writing'' in alphabetical order to read as follows:


Sec.  390.5  Definitions.

* * * * *
    Written or in writing means printed, handwritten, or typewritten 
either on paper or other tangible medium, or by any method of 
electronic documentation that meets the requirements of 49 CFR 390.32.


Sec.  390.7  [Amended]

0
39. Amend Sec.  390.7 by removing paragraph (b)(2) and redesignating 
paragraphs (b)(3) through (7) as (b)(2) through (6).
0
40. Revise Sec.  390.31 to read as follows:


Sec.  390.31  Copies of records and documents.

    All records and documents required to be maintained under this 
subchapter must be maintained for the periods specified. Except as 
otherwise provided, copies that are legible and accurately reflect the 
information required to be contained in the record or document may be 
maintained in lieu of originals.
0
41. Add a new Sec.  390.32 to read as follows:


Sec.  390.32  Electronic documents and signatures.

    (a) Applicability. This section applies to documents documents that 
entities or individuals are required to retain, regardless of whether 
FMCSA subsequently requires them to be produced or displayed to FMCSA 
staff or other parties entitled to access. This section does not apply 
to documents that must be submitted directly to FMCSA.
    (b) Electronic records or documents. Anyone required to generate, 
maintain or exchange documents to satisfy requirements in chapter III 
of subtitle B of title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR parts 
300 through 399) may use electronic methods to satisfy those 
requirements.
    (c) Electronic signatures. (1) Anyone required to sign or certify a 
document to satisfy the requirements of chapter III of subtitle B of 
title 49, Code of Federal Regulations (49 CFR parts 300 through 399) 
may use an electronic signature.
    (2) An electronic signature is a method of signing an electronic 
communication that identifies and authenticates a particular person as 
the source of the electronic communication and indicates such person's 
approval of the information contained in the electronic communication. 
An electronic signature may be made using any available technology that 
otherwise satisfies FMCSA's requirements.
    (d) Requirements. Any person or entity may use documents signed, 
certified, generated, maintained or exchanged using electronic methods 
if the documents accurately reflect the information otherwise required 
to be contained in them. Records, documents

[[Page 23316]]

or signatures generated, maintained or exchanged using electronic 
methods do not satisfy the requirements of this section if they are not 
legible or capable of being retained, used for the purpose they were 
created for, or accurately reproduced for reference by any party 
entitled to access.

PART 391--QUALIFICATIONS OF DRIVERS AND LONGER COMBINATION VEHICLE 
(LCV) DRIVER INSTRUCTORS

0
42. The authority citation for part 391 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 504, 508, 31133, 31136, and 31502; sec. 
4007(b) of Pub. L. 102-240, 105 Stat. 1914, 2152; sec. 114 of Pub. 
L. 103-311, 108 Stat. 1673, 1677; sec. 215 of Pub. L. 106-159, 113 
Stat. 1748, 1767; sec. 32934 of Pub. L. 112-141, 126 Stat. 405, 830; 
and 49 CFR 1.87.


Sec.  391.55  [Amended]

0
43. Amend Sec.  391.55(b)(2) by removing the word ``photographic''.

PART 395--HOURS OF SERVICE OF DRIVERS

0
44. The authority citation for part 395 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 504, 31133, 31136, 31137, and 31502; sec. 
113, Pub. L. 103-311, 108 Stat. 1673, 1676; sec. 229, Pub. L. 106-
159 (as transferred by sec. 4115 and amended by secs. 4130-4132, 
Pub. L. 109-59, 119 Stat. 1144, 1726, 1743, 1744); sec. 4133, Pub. 
L. 109-59, 119 Stat. 1144, 1744; sec. 108, Pub. L. 110-432, 122 
Stat. 4860-4866; sec. 32934, Pub. L. 112-141, 126 Stat. 405, 830; 
and 49 CFR 1.87.

0
45. Amend Sec.  395.8 by revising paragraphs (f)(2) and (i) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  395.8  Driver's record of duty status.

* * * * *
    (f) * * *
    (2) Entries made by driver only. All entries relating to a driver's 
duty status must be legible and made by the driver.
* * * * *
    (i) Filing driver's record of duty status. The driver shall submit 
the driver's record of duty status to the regular employing motor 
carrier within 13 days following completion of the form.
* * * * *
0
46. Amend Sec.  395.15 by revising paragraphs (b)(2), (4), and (5), 
(e), (f), (h)(1), (i) introductory text, and (i)(4) and (7) to read as 
follows:


Sec.  395.15  Automatic on-board recording devices.

* * * * *
    (b) * * *
    (2) The device shall provide a means whereby authorized Federal, 
State, or local officials can immediately check the status of a 
driver's hours of service. This information may be used in conjunction 
with records of duty status maintained in other media, for the previous 
7 days.
* * * * *
    (4) The driver shall have in his/her possession records of duty 
status for the previous 7 consecutive days available for inspection 
while on duty. These records shall consist of information stored in and 
retrievable from the automatic on-board recording device, other written 
records, or any combination thereof.
    (5) All copies of other written records of duty status referenced 
in paragraph (b)(4) of this section must be signed by the driver. The 
driver's signature certifies that the information contained thereon is 
true and correct.
* * * * *
    (e) Entries made by driver only. If a driver is required to make 
written entries relating to the driver's duty status, such entries must 
be made by the driver and be legible.
    (f) Reconstruction of records of duty status. Drivers are required 
to note any failure of automatic on-board recording devices, and to 
reconstruct the driver's record of duty status for the current day, and 
the past 7 days, less any days for which the drivers have records, and 
to continue to prepare a written record of all subsequent duty status 
until the device is again operational.
* * * * *
    (h) * * *
    (1) The driver shall submit to the employing motor carrier, each 
record of the driver's duty status within 13 days following the 
completion of each record;
* * * * *
    (i) Performance of recorders. Motor carriers that use automatic on-
board recording devices for recording their drivers' records of duty 
status shall ensure that:
* * * * *
    (4) The automatic on-board recording device warns the driver 
visually and/or audibly that the device has ceased to function.
* * * * *
    (7) The on-board recording device/system identifies sensor failures 
and edited data.
* * * * *

PART 396--INSPECTION, REPAIR, AND MAINTENANCE

0
47. The authority citation for part 396 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 504, 31133, 31136, 31151, and 31502; sec. 
32934, Pub. L. 112-141, 126 Stat. 405, 830; and 49 CFR 1.87.

Sec.  396.11  [Amended]

0
48. Amend Sec.  396.11 by removing the word ``original'' from 
paragraphs (a)(3)(ii), (a)(4), (b)(4), and (c)(1) and (2).


Sec.  396.12  [Amended]

0
49. Amend Sec.  396.12 by removing the word ``original'' from paragraph 
(d).

PART 398--TRANSPORTATION OF MIGRANT WORKERS

0
50. The authority citation for part 398 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  49 U.S.C. 13301, 13902, 31132, 31133, 31136, 31502, 
and 31504; sec. 204, Pub. L. 104-88, 109 Stat. 803, 941 (49 U.S.C. 
701 note); sec. 212, Pub. L. 106-159, 113 Stat. 1748, 1766; and 49 
CFR 1.87.


Sec.  398.3  [Amended]

0
51. Amend Sec.  398.3(b)(8) by removing the words ``photographically 
reproduced'' wherever they appear.

    Issued under the authority of delegation in 49 CFR 1.87: April 
2, 2014.
Anne S. Ferro,
Administrator.
[FR Doc. 2014-09376 Filed 4-25-14; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-EX-P