[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 98 (Friday, May 20, 2016)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 31853-31854]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-11840]

[[Page 31853]]



Office of Workers' Compensation Programs

20 CFR Part 725

RIN 1240-AA10

Black Lung Benefits Act: Disclosure of Medical Evidence and 
Payment of Benefits; Technical Amendment

AGENCY: Office of Workers' Compensation Programs, Labor.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: The Office of Workers' Compensation Programs is making a 
technical amendment to its regulation on disclosure of medical 
information to reflect the Office of Management and Budget's approval 
under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), 44 U.S.C. 3501-20, of 
the information collection requirements contained in that regulation.

DATES: This rule is effective May 26, 2016.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Michael Chance, Director, Division of 
Coal Mine Workers' Compensation, Office of Workers' Compensation 
Programs, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue NW., Suite 
N-3520, Washington, DC 20210. Telephone: 1-800-347-2502. This is a 
toll-free number. TTY/TDD callers may dial toll-free 1-800-877-8339 for 
further information.


I. Background of This Rulemaking

    On April 26, 2016, OWCP published a final rule, titled Black Lung 
Benefits Act: Disclosure of Medical Evidence and Payment of Benefits, 
to address certain procedural issues that had arisen in claim 
adjudications and other technical issues. 81 FR 24464 (April 26, 2016). 
Section 725.413 requires parties to exchange certain medical 
information, and therefore could be considered a collection of 
information within the meaning of the PRA. Federal agencies may not 
conduct or sponsor a collection of information, and the public is not 
required to respond to a collection of information, unless it is 
approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and displays a 
valid OMB control number. See 5 CFR 1320.5(a), (b), 1320.6. 
Accordingly, the Department submitted an Information Collection Request 
(ICR) to OMB for approval when it proposed the rule. See ICR Reference 
Number 201504-1240-002. The notice of proposed rulemaking specifically 
invited comments regarding the information collection and notified the 
public of their opportunity to file comments with both OMB and the 
Department. 80 FR 23749 (April 29, 2015). On July 24, 2015, OMB 
concluded its review of the ICR by asking the Department to submit 
another ICR at the final rule stage after considering any public 
comments regarding the information collection requirements in the rule.
    The Department received comments on the substance of proposed Sec.  
725.413; those comments are fully addressed in the final rule. 81 FR 
24469-74. The Department received no comments about the information 
collection burdens. The Department submitted an ICR to OMB for the 
information collection in the final rule on March 16, 2016, see ICR 
Reference Number 201511-1240-003, and specified in the final rule that 
it would publish a notice in the Federal Register to announce the 
result of OMB's review. 81 FR 24477. On May 3, 2016, OMB approved the 
Department's information collection request under Control Number 1240-
0054, thus giving effect to the information collection requirements 
contained in the final rule. OMB authorization for this information 
collection currently expires on May 31, 2019. The Department is making 
this technical amendment to comply with the notice requirements of 5 
CFR 1320.5(b).

II. Statutory Authority

    Sections 411(b), 422(a), and 426(a) of the Black Lung Benefits Act 
(30 U.S.C. 921(b), 932(a), and 936(a)) authorize the Secretary of Labor 
to prescribe rules and regulations necessary for its administration and 

III. Rulemaking Analyses

Administrative Procedure Act

    Section 553(b)(3) of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 
U.S.C. 553(b)(3), provides that an agency is not required to publish a 
notice of proposed rulemaking in the Federal Register and solicit 
public comments when the agency has good cause to find that doing so 
would be ``impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public 
interest.'' 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3). The Department has determined that 
publishing a separate notice of proposed rulemaking for this technical 
amendment to 20 CFR 725.413 is unnecessary. The information collection 
requirements whose approval this technical amendment announces were 
previously published in the April 29, 2015, notice of proposed 
rulemaking. 80 FR 23749. The Department invited public comment on both 
the substance of the regulatory revisions and the information 
collection burden they may impose. Id. OMB approved this information 
collection after consideration of the comments received. Thus, 
publishing an additional notice of proposed rulemaking for this 
collection would be duplicative and is unnecessary.
    Section 553(d) of the APA, 5 U.S.C. 553(d), provides that 
substantive rules should take effect not less than 30 days after the 
date they are published in the Federal Register unless ``otherwise 
provided by the agency for good cause found[.]'' 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3). 
This technical amendment does not change the substance of Sec.  725.413 
and instead merely confirms that OMB has approved the information 
collection contained in that regulation. For this reason, the 
Department finds good cause to make this technical amendment effective 
on the same date as the final rule, May 26, 2016. 81 FR 24465.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    This rule is not subject to the regulatory flexibility provisions 
of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.) because it is 
not subject to the APA's proposed rulemaking requirements.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

    This rule is not subject to sections 202 or 205 of the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act (UMRA, 2 U.S.C. 1501 et seq.) because it is not 
subject to the APA's proposed rulemaking requirements. In addition, 
this action does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments 
or impose a significant intergovernmental mandate as described in 
sections 203 and 204 of the UMRA.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    This rule announces OMB's approval of the information collection 
contained in the final rule published on April 26, 2016, at 81 FR 
24464. It does not impose any new information collection burden under 
the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

Executive Order 12866

    This rule is not a ``significant regulatory action'' and is 
therefore not subject to review by OMB under Executive Order 12866 (58 
FR 51735).

Executive Order 13132 (Federalism)

    The Department has reviewed this rule in accordance with Executive 
Order 13132 (64 FR 43255) regarding federalism, and has determined that 
it does not have ``federalism

[[Page 31854]]

implications.'' The rule will not ``have substantial direct effects on 
the States, on the relationship between the national government and the 
States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the 
various levels of government.''

Executive Order 12988 (Civil Justice Reform)

    This rule meets the applicable standards in sections 3(a) and 
3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform (61 FR 4729), to 
minimize litigation, eliminate ambiguity, and reduce burden.

List of Subjects in 20 CFR Part 725

    Administrative practice and procedure, Black lung benefits, Claims, 
Coal miners' entitlement to benefits, Health care, Reporting and 
recordkeeping requirements, Survivors' entitlement to benefits, Total 
disability due to pneumoconiosis, Workers' compensation.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Department of Labor 
amends 20 CFR part 725 as follows:


1. The authority citation for part 725 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 301; Reorganization Plan No. 6 of 1950, 15 
FR 3174; 30 U.S.C. 901 et seq., 902(f), 934, 936; 33 U.S.C. 901 et 
seq.; 42 U.S.C. 405; Secretary's Order 10-2009, 74 FR 58834.

2. Add a parenthetical statement to Sec.  725.413 to read as follows:

Sec.  725.413  Disclosure of medical information.

* * * * *
(The Office of Management and Budget has approved the information 
collection contained in this section and assigned control number 
1240-0054 with an expiration date of May 31, 2019.)

    Signed at Washington, DC, this 12th day of May, 2016.
Leonard J. Howie, III,
Director, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs.
[FR Doc. 2016-11840 Filed 5-19-16; 8:45 am]