[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 112 (Tuesday, June 11, 2013)]
[Pages 35056-35058]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-13794]




Effectiveness of the Reactor Oversight Process Baseline 
Inspection Program

AGENCY: Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION: Public meeting and request for comment.


SUMMARY: The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) plans to hold a 
public meeting to discuss the effectiveness of the reactor oversight 
process (ROP) baseline inspection program with members of the public, 
licensees, and interest groups. The NRC is also seeking public comment 
about the effectiveness of the ROP baseline inspection program. 
Responses received at the meeting and public comments submitted to the 
NRC will provide important information for ongoing program improvement.

DATES: The public meeting will be held on July 17, 2013. See Section 
III, Public Meeting, of this document for more information on the 
meeting. Comments on the issues and questions presented in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document should be submitted 
by July 26, 2013.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by any of the following methods 
(unless this document describes a different method for submitting 
comments on a specific subject):
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2013-0125. Address 
questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-492-
3668; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact 
the individual(s) listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section 
of this document.
     Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Chief, Rules, 
Announcements, and

[[Page 35057]]

Directives Branch, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: TWB-05-B01M, 
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.
    For additional direction on accessing information and submitting 
comments, see ``Accessing Information and Submitting Comments'' in the 
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Marsha Gamberoni, Office of Nuclear 
Reactor Regulations, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 
20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-0890; Marsha.Gamberoni@nrc.gov.


I. Accessing Information and Submitting Comments

A. Accessing Information

    Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2013-0125 when contacting the NRC 
about the availability of information regarding this document. You may 
access information related to this document, which the NRC possesses 
and is publicly available, by any of the following methods:
     Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2013-0125.
     NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System 
(ADAMS): You may access publicly available documents online in the NRC 
Library at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/adams.html. To begin the 
search, select ``ADAMS Public Documents'' and then select ``Begin Web-
based ADAMS Search.'' For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's 
Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-
4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. The ADAMS accession number 
for each document referenced in this document (if that document is 
available in ADAMS) is provided the first time that a document is 
     NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public 
documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 
Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.
     Information regarding the ROP and licensee performance can 
be accessed at http://www.nrc.gov/NRR/OVERSIGHT/ASSESS/.html.

B. Submitting Comments

    Please include Docket ID NRC-2013-0125 in the subject line of your 
comment submission, in order to ensure that the NRC is able to make 
your comment submission available to the public in this docket.
    The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact 
information that you do not want to be publicly disclosed in you 
comment submission. The NRC will post all comment submissions at http://www.regulations.gov as well as enter the comment submissions into 
ADAMS. The NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove 
identifying or contact information.
    If you are requesting or aggregating comments from other persons 
for submission to the NRC, then you should inform those persons not to 
include identifying or contact information that they do not want to be 
publicly disclosed in their comment submission. Your request should 
state that the NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to 
remove such information before making the comment submissions available 
to the public or entering the comment submissions into ADAMS.

II. Program Overview

    The mission of the NRC is to ensure adequate protection of public 
health and safety, promote the common defense and security, and protect 
the environment. The NRC regulates commercial nuclear power plants 
through a combination of regulatory requirements; licensing; safety 
oversight, including inspection, assessment of performance and 
enforcement; operational experience evaluation; and regulatory support 
activities. The NRC periodically reviews each of these processes and is 
in the process of reviewing the baseline inspection program and the 
associated inspection procedures. Inspection procedures are statements 
of requirements or guidance for inspection activities that focus on 
safety. Baseline inspections are performed annually at all plants. 
Inspection Manual Chapter 2515 Appendix A provides background on the 
baseline inspection program including the objectives and philosophy and 
contains a list of all inspection procedures.
    The agency's goal for the current review is to enhance the baseline 
inspection program to incorporate the needed inspection areas for the 
current environment, eliminate redundant or no longer necessary 
inspection areas, maximize efficient and effective use of agency 
resources, and incorporate flexibility where appropriate. This process 
should provide a validation of the basic philosophy and key principles 
of the baseline inspection program with allowance to make changes where 
it may be necessary.

III. Public Meeting

    The public meeting will be held in Rockville, Maryland, at 11555 
Rockville Pike, in the NRC Commissioners' Hearing Room on July 17, 
2013. The agenda for the public meeting will be noticed no fewer than 
10 days prior to the meeting on the NRC's Public Meeting Schedule Web 
site at http://www.nrc.gov/public-involve/public-meetings/index.cfm. 
Any meeting updates or changes will be made available on this Web site.
    At the meeting, the NRC will discuss inspection areas such as 
engineering, maintenance, operations, and problem identification and 
resolution. The NRC has prepared the following questions in advance of 
the meeting to aid in a focused discussion on specific topics. In 
addition, the NRC specifically requests public comment addressing the 
following topics:
    (1) What issues/programs/components, if any, should be covered by 
the ROP baseline inspection program, but are not? What areas, if any, 
are covered by the ROP baseline inspection program that should not be?
    (2) How can the baseline inspection program be more efficient and/
or effective?
    (3) What redundancies exist in the baseline inspection program? For 
example, do the current baseline inspection procedures have the correct 
breadth to ensure we are not inspecting the same things?
    (4) What ways are there to increase the NRC's focus on the most 
significant performance issues at a plant? Are there areas of licensee 
plant operations and performance which warrant increased or new NRC 
focus? Are there areas where the NRC's focus should be decreased?
    (5) How can we improve the existing baseline inspection procedures 
to result in findings that have a clear tie to nuclear safety, are 
indicative of current performance, and provide the most insight?
    (6) How can we better integrate operating experience into the 
baseline inspection program?
    (7) What changes, if any, can be made to the existing baseline 
inspection program to ensure we are sufficiently evaluating age related 
degradation or failures of passive or active systems, structures, or 
    (8) What changes, if any, should be made to the baseline inspection 
program to ensure it is adequate for the current environment (e.g. 
external event uncertainties, plants entering extended operation, 
effects of power uprates, new corporate/financial structures, etc)?

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    (9) What changes, if any, should be made to the frequency of team 

    Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 4th day of June, 2013.

    For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
Timothy J. Kobetz,
Acting Director, Division of Inspection and Regional Support, Office of 
Nuclear Reactor Regulations.
[FR Doc. 2013-13794 Filed 6-10-13; 8:45 am]