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Notice

Proposed Extension of Information Collection; Comment Request; Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 85-68

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Labor (Department), as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, conducts a preclearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA 95) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed.

Currently, the Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration is soliciting comments concerning the proposed extension of the information collection provisions of Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 85-68. A copy of the Information Collection Request (ICR) may be obtained by contacting the office listed in the addresses section of this notice.

DATES:

Written comments must be submitted to the office shown in the addresses section below on or before April 16, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

Gerald B. Lindrew, Office of Policy and Research, U.S. Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room N-5647, Washington, D.C. 20210. Telephone: (202) 219-4782; Fax: (202) 219-4745. These are not toll-free numbers.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

Pursuant to section 408 of ERISA, the Department has authority to grant an exemption from the prohibitions of sections 406 and 407(a) if it can determine that the exemption is administratively feasible, in the interest of participants and beneficiaries, and protective of the rights of participants and beneficiaries of the plan. Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 85-68 describes the conditions under which a plan is permitted to acquire customer notes accepted by an employer of employees covered by the plan in the ordinary course of the employer's primary business activity. The exemption covers sales as well as contributions of customer notes by an employer to its plan. Specifically, the exemption requires that the employer provide a written guarantee to repurchase a note which becomes more than 60 days delinquent, that such notes be secured by a perfected security interest in the property financed by the note, and that the collateral be insured. This ICR requires that records pertaining to the transaction be maintained for a period of six years for the purpose of ensuring that the transactions are protective of the rights of participants and beneficiaries.

I. Desired Focus of Comments

The Department is particularly interested in comments that:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, Start Printed Page 10513electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

III. Current Actions

This notice requests comments on the extension of the ICR included in PTE-85-68. The ICR included in this exemption is intended to ensure that the conditions of ERISA section 408 have been satisfied with respect to transactions involving customer notes. The Department is not proposing or implementing changes to the existing ICR at this time.

Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection of information

Agency: Department of Labor, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration.

Title: Prohibited Transaction Exemption 85-68.

OMB Number: 1210-0094.

Affected Public: Individuals or households; Business or other for-profit; Not-for-profit institutions.

Respondents: 120.

Frequency of Response: On occasion.

Responses: 960.

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 960.

Total Burden Cost (Operating and Maintenance): $0.00.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of the information collection request; they will also become a matter of public record.

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Dated: February 6, 2001.

Gerald B. Lindrew,

Deputy Director, Office of Policy and Research, Pension and Welfare Benefits Administration.

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[FR Doc. 01-3832 Filed 2-14-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4510-29-P