[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 180 (Tuesday, September 17, 2013)]
[Pages 57130-57131]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-22514]



National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Proposed Information Collection; Comment Request; Conflict of 
Interest Disclosure for Nonfederal Government Individuals Who Are 
Candidates To Conduct Peer Reviews

AGENCY: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice.


SUMMARY: The Department of Commerce, as part of its continuing effort 
to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, invites the general public 
and other Federal agencies to take this opportunity to comment on 
proposed and/or continuing information collections, as required by the 
Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995.

DATES: Written comments must be submitted on or before November 18, 

ADDRESSES: Direct all written comments to Jennifer Jessup, Departmental 
Paperwork Clearance Officer, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th 
and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet 
at JJessup@doc.gov).

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Requests for additional information or 
copies of the information collection instrument and instructions should 
be directed to Michael Liddel (301) 427-8139 or 


I. Abstract

    This is an extension of a currently approved collection.
    The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued government-wide 
guidance to enhance the practice of peer review of government science 
documents. OMB's Final Information Quality Bulletin for Peer Review 
(``Peer Review Bulletin'' or PRB) (available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/memoranda/fy2005/m05-03.pdf) establishes minimum 
peer review standards for influential scientific information that 
Federal agencies intend to disseminate.
    The Peer Review Bulletin also directs Federal agencies to adopt or 
adapt the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) policy for evaluating 
conflicts of interest when selecting peer reviewers who are not Federal 
government employees (federal employees are subject to Federal ethics 
requirements). For peer review purposes, the term ``conflicts of 
interest'' means any financial or other

[[Page 57131]]

interest which conflicts with the service of the individual because it 
could: (1) Significantly impair the individual's objectivity; or (2) 
create an unfair competitive advantage for any person or organization.
    NOAA has adapted the NAS policy and developed two confidential 
conflict disclosure forms which the agency will use to examine 
prospective reviewers' potential financial conflicts and other 
interests that could impair objectivity or create an unfair advantage. 
One form is for peer reviewers of studies related to government 
regulation and the other form is for all other influential scientific 
information subject to the Peer Review Bulletin. In addition, the 
latter form has been adapted by NOAA's Office of Oceanic and 
Atmospheric Research for potential reviewers of scientific 
    The forms include questions about employment as well as investment 
and property interests and research funding. Both forms also require 
the submission of curriculum vitae. NOAA is seeking to collect this 
information from potential peer reviewers who are not government 
employees when conducting a peer review pursuant to the PRB. The 
information collected in the conflict of interest disclosure is 
essential to NOAA's compliance with the OMB PRB, and helps to ensure 
that government studies are reviewed by independent, impartial peer 

II. Method of Collection

    Forms may be downloaded from the Internet and are fillable and 
signable electronically or manually. They may be submitted, along with 
the Curriculum Vitae, via email or regular mail.

III. Data

    OMB Control Number: 0648-0567.
    Form Number: None.
    Type of Review: Regular submission (extension of a currently 
approved collection).
    Affected Public: Individuals or households.
    Estimated Number of Respondents: 321.
    Estimated Time per Response: 30 minutes.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden Hours: 161.
    Estimated Total Annual Cost to Public: $0 in recordkeeping/
reporting costs.

IV. Request for Comments

    Comments are invited on: (a) Whether the proposed collection of 
information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of 
the agency, including whether the information shall have practical 
utility; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden 
(including hours and cost) of the proposed collection of information; 
(c) ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the 
information to be collected; and (d) ways to minimize the burden of the 
collection of information on respondents, including through the use of 
automated collection techniques or other forms of information 
    Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized 
and/or included in the request for OMB approval of this information 
collection; they also will become a matter of public record.

    Dated: September 11, 2013.
Gwellnar Banks,
Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.
[FR Doc. 2013-22514 Filed 9-16-13; 8:45 am]