[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 31 (Thursday, February 14, 2013)]
[Pages 10689-10690]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-03369]



Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration

[Docket No. PHMSA-2013-0029]

Pipeline Safety: Public Forum State One-Call Exemptions

AGENCY: Office of Pipeline Safety, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials 
Safety Administration, DOT.

ACTION: Notice; public forum.


SUMMARY: The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration 
will sponsor a public forum on state one-call exemptions. The forum 
will be held on March 14, 2013, in West Palm Beach, Florida at the Palm 
Beach County Convention Center. At the forum, PHMSA will discuss the 
requirements of the Pipeline Safety, Regulatory Certainty and Job 
Creation Act of 2011 relating to exemptions in state one-call programs 
and actions taken to date. In addition, damage prevention stakeholders 
will discuss existing data relating to this topic and present 
perspectives during panel discussions.

DATES: The public forum will be held on Thursday, March 14, 2013, from 
9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. EST. Name badge pickup and onsite registration 
will be available starting at 8:30 a.m. Refer to the forum Web site for 
the agenda and times at: http://primis.phmsa.dot.gov/meetings/MtgHome.mtg?mtg=85. Please note that the public forum will be webcast 
live and presentations will be available on the forum Web site within 
30 days following the public forum.

ADDRESSES: The forum is open to all. There is no cost to attend. The 
forum will be held at the Palm Beach County Convention Center, 650 
Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach, Florida, 33401. PHMSA is holding 
the forum at this location because it is the same location where the 
Common Ground Alliance (CGA) 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo 
will be held March 11-14, 2013, and many of the likely attendees for 
the PHMSA Forum will participate in the CGA Excavation Safety 
Conference. Attendees can make hotel arrangements for the PHMSA Forum 
under the CGA room block at a rate of $199.00 per night. Further 
details can be found at http://www.cgaconference.com.
    Registration: To help assure that adequate space is provided, all 
attendees are encouraged to register for the workshop at http://primis.phmsa.dot.gov/meetings/MtgHome.mtg?mtg=85.
    Comments: Members of the public may also submit written comments, 
either before or after the workshop. Comments should reference Docket 
No. PHMSA-2013-0029. Comments may be submitted in the following ways:
     E-Gov Web Site: http://www.regulations.gov. This site 
allows the public to enter comments on any Federal Register notice 
issued by any agency. Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Fax: 1-202-493-2251.
     Mail: Docket Management System, U.S. Department of 
Transportation, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., Room W12-140, Washington, 
DC 20590.
     Hand Delivery: DOT Docket Management System, Room W12-140, 
on the ground floor of the West Building, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE., 
Washington, DC between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, except 
Federal holidays.
    Instructions: Identify the Docket No. at the beginning of your 
comments. If you submit your comments by mail, submit two copies. If 
you wish to receive confirmation that PHMSA has received your comments, 
include a self-addressed stamped postcard. Internet users may submit 
comments at http://www.regulations.gov. Note: Comments will be posted 
without changes or edits to http://www.regulations.gov including any 
personal information provided. Please see the Privacy Act heading in 
the Regulatory Analyses and Notices section of the SUPPLEMENTARY 
INFORMATION for additional information.
    Privacy Act Statement: Anyone may search the electronic form of all 
comments received for any of our dockets. You may review DOT's complete 
Privacy Act Statement in the Federal Register published April 11, 2000 
(65 FR 19477).
    Information on Services for Individuals with Disabilities: For 
information on facilities or services for individuals with 
disabilities, or to request special assistance at the meeting, please 
contact Annmarie Robertson at 317-253-1622, or by email at 
[email protected] by March 4, 2013.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Annmarie Robertson, Office of Pipeline 
Safety, at 317-253-1622 or email at [email protected], 
regarding the subject matter of this notice.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Section 3 of the Pipeline Safety, Regulatory 
Certainty and Job Creation Act of 2011 (Pub. L. 112-90) requires that 
PHMSA address exemptions in state one-call laws in two ways: As a 
factor in determining eligibility for certain grants, and in a 
requirement to prepare a state-by-state exemption study. With respect 
to grant eligibility, in order to qualify for a state one-call grant 
under 49 U.S.C. 6106, a state may not provide any exemptions to 
municipalities, state agencies, or their contractors from the one-call 
notification system requirements of the program. This amendment takes 
effect 1/3/2014.
    With respect to the study on the impact of exemptions on pipeline 
safety, Section 3(d) states:
    (1) Study.--The Secretary of Transportation shall conduct a study 
on the impact of excavation damage on pipeline safety.
    (2) Contents.--The study shall include--
    (A) an analysis of the frequency and severity of different types of 
excavation damage incidents;
    (B) an analysis of exemptions to the one-call notification system 
requirements in each State;
    (C) a comparison of exemptions to the one-call notification system 
requirements in each State to the types of excavation damage incidents 
in that State; and
    (D) an analysis of the potential safety benefits and adverse 
consequences of eliminating all exemptions for mechanized excavation 
from State one-call notification systems.
    (3) Report.--Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of 
this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure and the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the 
House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

[[Page 10690]]

    PHMSA has conducted a preliminary analysis of the exemptions found 
in state one-call laws and regulations. PHMSA is in the process of 
developing a plan for addressing grant eligibility in accordance with 
the law and will continue to work with stakeholders concerning this 
requirement. This public forum will allow PHMSA, state pipeline safety 
representatives, excavators, pipeline operators, one-call centers, the 
public, facility locators, and stakeholders often affected by one-call 
exemptions such as railroads, local government and the farming 
community to share data and observations resulting from one-call 
exemptions and the impact of removing such exemptions. This input will 
facilitate PHMSA's ability to complete the study required in Section 3 
of the law.
    Participants of the public forum will benefit from: (1) 
Understanding the issue and the current status of states with regard to 
exemptions in one-call laws; (2) understanding the issues concerning 
the availability of data to support or challenge existing exemptions; 
and (3) listening to panelists present perspectives, both positive and 
negative, on the existence of exemptions in state one-call laws.
    Interested persons may obtain more information on damage prevention 
at: http://primis.phmsa.dot.gov/comm/DamagePrevention.htm.

     Issued in Washington, DC, on February 8, 2013.
Linda Daugherty,
Deputy Associate Administrator for Policy and Programs.
[FR Doc. 2013-03369 Filed 2-13-13; 8:45 am]