[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 231 (Monday, December 4, 2017)]
[Pages 57196-57197]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-26060]

[[Page 57196]]



Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

[Docket No. APHIS-2017-0084]

Notice of Request for Revision to and Extension of Approval of an 
Information Collection; Approval of Laboratories for Conducting Aquatic 
Animal Tests for Export Health Certificates

AGENCY: Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION: Revision to and extension of approval of an information 
collection; comment request.


SUMMARY: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this 
notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's 
intention to request a revision to and extension of approval of an 
information collection associated with its efforts to certify certain 
laboratories that conduct aquatic animal testing for export activities.

DATES: We will consider all comments that we receive on or before 
February 2, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments by either of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2017-0084.
     Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Send your comment to 
Docket No. APHIS-2017-0084, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, 
APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road, Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-
    Supporting documents and any comments we receive on this docket may 
be viewed at http://www.regulations.gov/#!docketDetail;D=APHIS-2017-
0084 or in our reading room, which is located in Room 1141 of the USDA 
South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, 
DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through 
Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, 
please call (202) 799-7039 before coming.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: For information on conducting aquatic 
animal tests for export health certificates, contact Dr. Katharine 
Starzel, Aquaculture Liaison Coordinator, 1408 24th Street, Ruskin, FL 
33570; (813) 671-5230. For copies of more detailed information on the 
information collection, contact Ms. Kimberly Hardy, APHIS' Information 
Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851-2483.

    Title: Approval of Laboratories for Conducting Aquatic Animal Tests 
for Export Health Certificates.
    OMB Control Number: 0579-0429.
    Type of Request: Revision to and extension of approval of an 
information collection.
    Abstract: The Animal Health Protection Act (AHPA, 7 U.S.C. 8301 et 
seq.) is the primary Federal law governing the protection of animal 
health. The AHPA gives the Secretary of Agriculture broad authority to 
detect, control, or eradicate pests or diseases of livestock or 
poultry. The Secretary may also prohibit or restrict import or export 
of any animal or related material if necessary to prevent the spread of 
any livestock or poultry pest or disease.
    Disease prevention is the most effective method for maintaining a 
healthy animal population and enhancing the ability of U.S. producers 
to compete in the global market of animal and animal product trade. To 
facilitate the export of U.S. animals and animal products, the Animal 
and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the U.S. Department of 
Agriculture maintains information regarding the import health 
requirements of other countries for animals and animal products, 
including aquaculture animals, exported from the United States.
    While APHIS does not currently require the approval or 
certification of laboratories that conduct disease tests for the export 
of aquaculture animals, some countries that import these animals from 
the United States require them to be tested for certain diseases and 
the test results recorded on the export certificates. In addition, the 
test results must originate from a laboratory approved by the competent 
authority of the exporting country, which is APHIS in this case. State, 
university, and private laboratories can voluntarily seek APHIS 
approval of individual diagnostic methods. Though APHIS does not have 
regulations for the approval or certification of laboratories that 
conduct tests for the export of aquaculture animals, APHIS provides 
this approval as a service to U.S. exporters who export aquaculture 
animals to countries that require this certification.
    APHIS evaluates diagnostic methods for detecting aquatic animal 
pathogens listed by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) in 
the OIE diagnostic manual and other supporting scientific literature. 
APHIS lists the laboratories approved to conduct diagnostic testing in 
support of export health certification of aquatic species at http://www.aphis.usda.gov/animal_health/lab_info_services/downloads/ApprovedLabs_Aquaculture.pdf. Once approved, the laboratories are 
inspected by APHIS every 2 years to maintain their approval.
    The approval of laboratories to conduct tests for the export of 
aquaculture animals requires the use of certain information collection 
activities including notification of intent to request approval, 
application for APHIS approval, protocol statement, submission and 
recordkeeping of sample copies of diagnostic reports, quality 
assurance/control plans and their recordkeeping, notification of 
proposed changes to assay protocols, recordkeeping of supporting assay 
documentation, and request for removal of approved status.
    We are asking the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to approve 
our use of these information collection activities, as described, for 
an additional 3 years.
    The purpose of this notice is to solicit comments from the public 
(as well as affected agencies) concerning our information collection. 
These comments will help us:
    (1) Evaluate whether the collection of information is necessary for 
the proper performance of the functions of the Agency, including 
whether the information will have practical utility;
    (2) Evaluate the accuracy of our estimate of the burden of the 
collection of information, including the validity of the methodology 
and assumptions used;
    (3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to 
be collected; and
    (4) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those 
who are to respond, through use, as appropriate, of automated, 
electronic, mechanical, and other collection technologies; e.g., 
permitting electronic submission of responses.
    Estimate of Burden: The public burden for this collection of 
information is estimated to average 28.11 hours per response.
    Respondents: State, university, and private laboratory personnel.
    Estimated Annual Number of Respondents: 12.
    Estimated Annual Number of Responses per Respondent: 183.
    Estimated Annual Number of Responses: 2,205.
    Estimated Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 62,000 hours. (Due to 
averaging, the total annual burden hours may not equal the product of 
the annual number of responses multiplied by the reporting burden per 

[[Page 57197]]

    All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the 
request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of 
public record.

    Done in Washington, DC, this 29th day of November 2017.
Kevin Shea,
Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.
[FR Doc. 2017-26060 Filed 12-1-17; 8:45 am]