[Federal Register Volume 61, Number 94 (Tuesday, May 14, 1996)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 24239-24242]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 96-11963]


40 CFR Parts 52 and 81

[CT23-1-7084; FRL-5443-5]

Approval and Promulgation of Implementation Plans and Designation 
of Areas for Air Quality Planning Purposes; State of Connecticut

AGENCY: Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: EPA is responding to an adverse comment concerning EPA's 
proposal to redesignate Hartford, Connecticut as attainment for carbon 
monoxide. EPA is not changing its action to redesignate the area as 
attainment that took effect on January 2, 1996. EPA is also correcting 
an incorrect entry in the attainment status tables associated with this 

EFFECTIVE DATE: January 2, 1996.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Wing H. Chau, Air Quality Planning 
Unit, Office of Ecosystem Protection, United States Environmental 
Protection Agency, Region I, Boston, Massachusetts 02203, (617) 565-

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On October 31, 1995, EPA published a direct 
final rule (60 FR 55316) which announced that this rule would take 
effect in 60 days, or January 2, 1996, unless EPA received adverse 
comment on the rule within 30 days in response to a notice of proposed 
rulemaking published on the same day (60 FR 55354). EPA also committed 
to withdraw the direct final rule in the event it received adverse 
comment, and to respond to any adverse comments in a subsequent final 
rulemaking action. EPA did receive a timely adverse comment on this 
rule. EPA failed, however, to withdraw the final rule within the 60 
days given in the direct final rule, and the rule took effect on 
January 2, 1996.
    In this notice, EPA is responding to the comment it received, but 
for the reasons stated below, EPA is not changing the final rule in 
response to that comment. Had EPA withdrawn the direct final rule prior 
to its going into effect, EPA would have taken final action based on 
the proposal to promulgate a rule identical to the direct final rule 
that went into effect. Rather than now take the action of withdrawing 
the direct final rule only to repromulgate simultaneously an identical 
rule, however, EPA in this action is deciding to maintain the rule 
unchanged. EPA believes that withdrawal and repromulgation are 
unnecessary since the results would be identical to that obtained 
simply by leaving the rule unchanged and responding to the comments in 
this notice. This notice provides interested parties an opportunity to 
review how EPA addressed the comment and to petition for judicial 
review of EPA's action in this final rulemaking within 60 days of 
publication of this notice, as provided in section 307(b)(1) of the 
    Also, in the October 31, 1995 direct final rulemaking, the revised 
Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Sec. 81.307 designation table for 
carbon monoxide identified a number of towns in the Litchfield, 
Middlesex, and Tolland Counties as ``Nonattainment * * * Moderate 
12.7 ppm''. The table should have shown these areas as 
attainment areas for CO. The revised Sec. 81.307 designation table 
associated with this final rulemaking reflects the appropriate 
attainment status of the towns mentioned above. The USEPA regrets any 
inconvenience these errors may have caused.

I. Summary of Action and Responses to Comments

    EPA did receive one comment from the New York Mercantile Exchange 
(NYMEX), dated November 29, 1995. NYMEX is the world's largest exchange 
of energy futures, and NYMEX is concerned that the redesignation of the 
Hartford area might affect gasoline formulation requirements and 
disrupt futures contracts entered into based on gasoline formulation 
requirements in effect prior to the redesignation. The comment 
questioned whether EPA had offered interested persons any meaningful 
opportunity to comment on this proposal, and asserted that EPA should 
have provided ``far more than the limited period of notice afforded in 
these redesignation approvals'' to avoid disruption in the petroleum 
industry and energy futures markets when changing environmental 
    As a legal matter, this SIP action is subject to the procedures of 
the Administrative Procedures Act (``APA'')

[[Page 24240]]

for informal rulemaking. 5 U.S.C. Sec. 553; General Motors Corp. v. 
U.S., 110 S. Ct. 2528, 2533 (1990). It is well-settled that the APA 
``established the maximum procedural requirements which Congress was 
willing to have the courts impose upon agencies in conducting 
rulemaking procedures.'' Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power v. NRDC, 435 U.S. 
519, 524 (1978). In this action EPA published a notice of proposed 
rulemaking to redesignate the Hartford area as attainment for carbon 
monoxide, and gave the public thirty days to comment on that proposal. 
60 FR 55354 (October 31, 1995). In a simultaneous final rule EPA 
informed the public that if no comment had been received within thirty 
days of the accompanying proposal, the redesignation would take effect 
within sixty days of the final rule. 60 FR 55316 (October 31, 1995). 
EPA provided the public thirty days to comment, which is an adequate 
period for public review. Indeed, NYMEX availed itself of that 
opportunity to comment. Although it is unclear from the comment letter, 
NYMEX may have been complaining that EPA should delay the effective 
date this rule for more than thirty days following this final notice. 
The APA is clear that EPA must only wait thirty days to make a rule 
effective. 5 U.S.C. Sec. 553(d). EPA has fully discharged its legal 
obligation to provide the public adequate notice of this action.
    As a factual matter, the state of Connecticut had been developing 
this redesignation proposal for much longer than thirty days. The state 
published a notice concerning the redesignation on July 15, 1994, held 
a public hearing on August 17, 1994 and submitted it to EPA on 
September 30, 1994, fully 13 months before EPA published its notice 
proposing to approve the state's request for redesignation. NYMEX and 
its clients had ample opportunity to anticipate this change as a 
practical matter. NYMEX's comment suggests that its gasoline futures 
contracts trade ten months in advance. It would not be practical for 
EPA to give ten months' notice on all such SIP actions, nor is it 
legally required. For industries that are sensitive to changes in SIP 
requirements and need substantial lead-time to anticipate them, EPA 
encourages them to monitor SIP developments at the state level.

II. Final Rulemaking Action

    The USEPA maintains the approvals associated with the October 31, 
1995 direct final rulemaking (60 FR 55316) which included the 
redesignation of the Hartford/New Britain/Middletown CO area to 
attainment, Connecticut's 1990 base year CO emission inventory, and 
Connecticut's oxygenated fuel program as it applies to the Hartford/
Britain/Middletown area.
    Nothing in this action should be construed as permitting or 
allowing or establishing a precedent for any future request for 
revision to any SIP. Each request for revision to the SIP shall be 
considered separately in light of specific technical, economic, and 
environmental factors and in relation to relevant statutory and 
regulatory requirements.
    The CO SIP is designed to satisfy the requirements of part D of the 
CAA and to provide for attainment and maintenance of the CO NAAQS. This 
final redesignation should not be interpreted as authorizing the State 
to delete, alter, or rescind any of the CO emission limitations and 
restrictions contained in the approved CO SIP. Changes to CO SIP 
regulations rendering them less stringent than those contained in the 
EPA approved plan cannot be made unless a revised plan for attainment 
and maintenance is submitted to and approved by EPA. Unauthorized 
relaxations, deletions, and changes could result in both a finding of 
non-implementation (section 179(a) of the CAA) and in a SIP deficiency 
call made pursuant to sections 110(a)(2)(H) and 110(k)(2) of the CAA.
    Under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 600 et seq., EPA 
must prepare a regulatory flexibility analysis assessing the impact of 
any proposed or final rule on small entities. 5 U.S.C. 603 and 604. 
Alternatively, EPA may certify that the rule will not have a 
significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. Small 
entities include small businesses, small not-for-profit enterprises, 
and government entities with jurisdiction over populations of less than 
50,000. SIP approvals under section 110 and subchapter I, part D of the 
CAA do not create any new requirements, but simply approve requirements 
that the State is already imposing. Therefore, because the federal SIP 
approval does not impose any new requirements, it does not have any 
economic impact on any small entities. Redesignation of an area to 
attainment under section 107(d)(3)(E) of the CAA does not impose any 
new requirements on small entities.
    Redesignation is an action that affects the status of a 
geographical area and does not impose any regulatory requirements on 
sources. Accordingly, I certify that the approval of the redesignation 
request will not have an impact on any small entities.

Unfunded Mandates

    Under Sections 202, 203, and 205 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act of 1995 (``Unfunded Mandates Act''), signed into law on March 25, 
1995, EPA must undertake various actions in association with proposed 
or final rules that include a Federal mandate that may result in 
estimated costs of $100 million or more to the private sector, or to 
State, local, or tribal governments in the aggregate.
    Through submission of this state implementation plan or plan 
revision, the State and any affected local or tribal governments have 
elected to adopt the program provided for under section 175A and 
section 187(a)(1) of the Clean Air Act. The rules and commitments 
approved in this action may bind State, local and tribal governments to 
perform certain actions and also may ultimately lead to the private 
sector being required to certain duties. To the extent that the 
imposition of any mandate upon the State, local or tribal governments 
either as the owner or operator of a source or as mandate upon the 
private sector, EPA's action will impose no new requirements under 
State law; such sources are already subject to these requirements under 
State law. Accordingly, no additional costs to State, local, or tribal 
governments, or to the private sector, results from this action. EPA 
has also determined that this final action does not include a mandate 
that may result in estimated costs of $100 million or more to State, 
local, or tribal governments in the aggregate or to the private sector.

Opportunity for Judicial Review

    Under Section 307(b)(1) of the Clean Air Act, petitions for 
judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court 
of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by July 15, 1996. Filing a 
petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule 
does not affect the finality of this rule for the purposes of judicial 
review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial 
review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such 
rule or action. This action may not be challenged later in proceedings 
to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

List of Subjects

40 CFR Part 52

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, Carbon monoxide, 
Hydrocarbons, Nitrogen dioxide, Ozone, Reporting and record keeping 
requirements, Volatile organic compounds.

[[Page 24241]]

40 CFR Part 81

    Environmental protection, Air pollution control, National parks, 
Wilderness areas.

    Note: Incorporation by reference of the State Implementation 
Plan for the State of Connecticut was approved by the Director of 
the Federal Register on July 1, 1982.

    Dated: February 29, 1996.
John P. DeVillars,
Regional Administrator, Region I.

    Title 40 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Chapter I, Part 81 
is amended as follows:


    1. The authority citation for part 81 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401-7671q.

Subpart C--Section 107 Attainment Status Designations

    2. In Sec. 81.307 by revising the table for ``Connecticut--
CarbonMonoxide'' to read as follows:

Sec. 81.307   Connecticut.

* * * * *

                                          Connecticut--Carbon Monoxide                                          
                                                   Designation                         Classification           
           Designated area           ---------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                         Date1               Type              Date1               Type         
Hartford-New Britain-Middletown                                                                                 
    Hartford County (part)..........       1/2/96  .......................       1/2/96  .......................
        Bristol City, Burlington      ...........  Attainment               ...........  .......................
         Town, Avon Town, Bloomfield                                                                            
         Town, Canton Town, E.                                                                                  
         Granby Town, E. Hartford                                                                               
         Town, E. Windsor Town,                                                                                 
         Enfield Town, Farmington                                                                               
         Town, Glastonbury Town,                                                                                
         Granby Town, Hartford City,                                                                            
         Manchester Town,                                                                                       
         Marlborough Town, Newington                                                                            
         Town, Rocky Hill Town,                                                                                 
         Simsbury Town, S. Windsor                                                                              
         Town, Suffield Town, W.                                                                                
         Hartford Town, Wethersfield                                                                            
         Town, Windsor Town, Windsor                                                                            
         Locks Town, Berlin Town,                                                                               
         New Britain city,                                                                                      
         Plainville Town, and                                                                                   
         Southington Town.                                                                                      
Litchfield County (part):                                                                                       
    Plymouth Town                                                                                               
Middlesex County (part):                                                                                        
    Cromwell Town, Durham Town, E.    ...........  Attainment.              ...........  .......................
     Hampton Town, Haddam Town,                                                                                 
     Middlefield Town, Middleton                                                                                
     city, Portland Town, E. Haddam                                                                             
Tolland County (part):                ...........  Attainment.              ...........  .......................
    Andover Town, Boton Town,                                                                                   
     Ellington Town, Hebron Town,                                                                               
     Somers Town, Tolland Town, and                                                                             
     Vernon Town                                                                                                
New Haven--Meriden--Waterbury Area:                                                                             
Fairfield County (part):                                                                                        
    Shelton City....................  ...........  Attainment.              ...........  .......................
Litchfield County (part):                                                                                       
    Bethlehem Town, Thomaston Town,   ...........  Attainment.                                                  
     Watertown, Woodbury Town                                                                                   
New Haven County:                                                                                               
New York--N. New Jersey--Long Island                                                                            
Fairfield County (part):                                                                                        
    All cities and townships except   ...........  Nonattainment..........  ...........  Not classified         
     Shelton City                                                                                               
Litchfield County (part):...........  ...........  Nonattainment..........  ...........  Not classified         
    Bridgewater Town, New Milford                                                                               
                                                                                         Not classified         
  ..................................               Nonattainment..........  ...........  Moderate > 12.7 ppm    
                                                   Nonattainment..........  ...........  Moderate > 12.7 ppm    
                                                   Nonattainment..........  ...........  .......................
AQCR 041  Eastern Connecticut                                                                                   
                                      ...........  Unclassifiable/          ...........  .......................
Middlesex County (part):                                                                                        
    All portions except cities and                                                                              
     towns in Hartford Area.                                                                                    
New London County:                                                                                              
Tolland County (part):                                                                                          
    All portions except cities and                                                                              
     towns in Hartford Area.                                                                                    
Windham County:                                                                                                 
AQCR 044 Northwestern Connecticut                                                                               
                                      ...........  Unclassifiable/          ...........  .......................

[[Page 24242]]

Hartford County (part):                                                                                         
    Hartland Township                                                                                           
Litchfield County (part):                                                                                       
    All portions except cities and                                                                              
     towns in Hartford, New Haven,                                                                              
     and New York Areas.                                                                                        
1 This date is November 15, 1990, unless otherwise noted.                                                       

[FR Doc. 96-11963 Filed 5-13-96; 8:45 am]