[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 246 (Tuesday, December 26, 2017)]
[Proposed Rules]
[Pages 60932-60933]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-27510]


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DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE

28 CFR Parts 35 and 36

[CRT Docket No. 138]
RIN 1190-AA61; RIN 1190-AA62; RIN 1190-AA64; RIN 1190-AA65


Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability; Notice of 
Withdrawal of Four Previously Announced Rulemaking Actions

AGENCY: Civil Rights Division, Department of Justice.

ACTION: Notice of withdrawal.

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SUMMARY: The Department of Justice is announcing the withdrawal of four 
previously announced Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRMs), 
pertaining to title II and title III of the Americans with Disabilities 
Act (ADA), for further review.

DATES: As of December 26, 2017, these four previously announced ANPRMs 
are formally withdrawn.

ADDRESSES: Disability Rights Section, Civil Rights Division, U.S. 
Department of Justice, P.O. Box 2885, Fairfax, VA 22031-0885.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Anne Raish, Acting Chief, Disability 
Rights Section, Civil Rights Division, U.S. Department of Justice, at 
(202) 307-0663 (voice or TTY) (not a toll-free number). Information may 
also be obtained from the Department's toll-free ADA Information Line 
at (800) 514-0301 (voice), or (800) 514-0383 (TTY).
    You may obtain copies of this document in an alternative format by 
calling the ADA Information Line at (800) 514-0301 (voice), or (800) 
514-0383 (TTY).

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Department of Justice is formally 
announcing the withdrawal of four previously announced Advance Notices 
of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRMs) pertaining to title II and title III of 
the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA): (1) Nondiscrimination on the 
Basis of Disability; Accessibility of Web Information and Services of 
Public Accommodations (RIN 1190-AA61); (2) Nondiscrimination on the 
Basis of Disability in State and Local Government Services; Next 
Generation 9-1-1 (RIN 1190-AA62); (3) Nondiscrimination on the Basis of 
Disability by State and Local Governments and Places of Public 
Accommodation; Equipment and Furniture (RIN 1190-AA64); and (4) 
Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability: Accessibility of Web 
Information and Services of State and Local Government (RIN 1190-AA65).

Reasons for Withdrawal

A. Accessibility of Web Information

    On July 26, 2010, the Department published an ANPRM regarding the 
accessibility of Web information and services of state and local 
government entities (title II) and public accommodations (title III). 
75 FR 43460. The Department subsequently bifurcated the rulemaking to 
deal separately with state and local government entities subject to 
title II (RIN 1190-AA65) and public accommodations subject to title III 
(RIN 1190-AA61), and proceeded first with the title II rulemaking. On 
May 9, 2016, the Department published a Supplemental Advance Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking (SANPRM) regarding title II Web accessibility to 
seek additional public input regarding a wide range of issues 
pertaining to the accessibility of Web information and services of 
state and local governments. 81 FR 28658. The Department has not 
published any rulemaking document regarding title III Web accessibility 
since the 2010 ANPRM.
    The Department is evaluating whether promulgating regulations about 
the accessibility of Web information and services is necessary and 
appropriate. Such an evaluation will be informed by additional review 
of data and further analysis. The Department will continue to assess 
whether specific technical standards are necessary and appropriate to 
assist covered entities with complying with the ADA. Accordingly, the 
Department is withdrawing the two previously announced ANPRMs related 
to the accessibility of Web information and services, 
``Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability; Accessibility of Web 
Information and Services of State and Local Government Entities and 
Public Accommodations'' (RIN 1190-AA61) (75 FR 43460), and 
``Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability: Accessibility of Web 
Information and Services of State and Local Government'' (RIN 1190-
AA65) (81 FR 28658).

B. Accessibility of Equipment and Furniture

    The Department initiated a review of accessibility of equipment and 
furniture on July 26, 2010, with the publication of an ANPRM to 
consider possible changes to requirements under titles II and III of 
the ADA to ensure that non-fixed equipment and furniture provided by 
covered entities are accessible to individuals with disabilities. 75 FR 
43452. While some types of fixed equipment and furniture are explicitly 
covered by the ADA Standards for Accessible Design, see, e.g., 28 CFR

[[Page 60933]]

36.406(b), there are currently no specific provisions in the ADA 
regulations that include standards governing the accessibility of 
equipment and furniture that are not fixed. The Department has not 
published any rulemaking document regarding non-fixed equipment and 
furniture since the 2010 ANPRM.
    The Department is reevaluating whether regulation of the 
accessibility of non-fixed equipment and furniture is necessary and 
appropriate. Accordingly, the Department is withdrawing the previously 
announced ANPRM entitled ``Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability 
by State and Local Governments and Places of Public Accommodation; 
Equipment and Furniture'' (RIN 1190-AA64) (75 FR 43452).

C. Next Generation 9-1-1

    On July 26, 2010, the Department published an ANPRM announcing the 
Department's intention to consider a rule to revise the ADA title II 
regulation to address how Public Safety Answering Points, which provide 
9-1-1 services at the local level, can shift from analog 
telecommunications technology to new internet-Protocol-enabled Next 
Generation 9-1-1 (NG 9-1-1) services that will provide voice and data 
(such as text, pictures, and video) capabilities. 75 FR 43446. The 
Department has not published any rulemaking document regarding NG 9-1-1 
since the 2010 ANPRM.
    The Department is evaluating how best to address the accessibility 
of NG 9-1-1 services in light of changing circumstances. With the 
increased adoption of NG 9-1-1, the Department is evaluating whether 
regulatory action is necessary and appropriate to promote the increased 
availability of text to 9-1-1 services to improve access for people 
with communication disabilities. Accordingly, the Department is 
withdrawing the previously announced ANPRM entitled ``Nondiscrimination 
on the Basis of Disability in State and Local Government Services; 
Accessibility of Next Generation 9-1-1'' (RIN 1190-AA62) (75 FR 43446).

Conclusion

    In consideration of the foregoing, the Department announces the 
withdrawal of the four above-named ANPRMs. Such ANPRMs had no force or 
effect of law, and no party should rely upon them as presenting the 
Department of Justice's position on these issues. This notification 
does not preclude the Department from issuing other documents on these 
subjects in the future or commit the Department to any future course of 
action, nor does it constitute an interpretation of existing law. 
Should the Department decide to undertake rulemaking in the future, the 
Department will publish new rulemaking actions and provide new 
opportunities for public comment. Furthermore, this notification only 
addresses the specific ANPRMs identified in this document, and does not 
address any other pending proposals that the Department has issued or 
is considering.

    Dated: December 15, 2017.
John M. Gore,
Acting Assistant Attorney General, Civil Rights Division.
[FR Doc. 2017-27510 Filed 12-22-17; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 4410-13-P