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Notice

Proposed Submission of Information Collection for OMB Review; Comment Request; Annual Financial and Actuarial Information Reporting

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AGENCY:

Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

ACTION:

Notice of intention to request extension of OMB approval.

SUMMARY:

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (“PBGC”) intends to request that the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) extend approval, under the Paperwork Reduction Act, of the collection of information under its regulation on Annual Financial and Actuarial Information Reporting, 29 CFR Part 4010 (OMB control number 1212-0049; expires December 31, 2001). This notice informs the public of the PBGC's intent and solicits public comment on the collection of information.

DATES:

Comments should be submitted by October 15, 2001.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be mailed to the Office of the General Counsel, suite 340, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005-4026, or delivered to that address between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on business days. Written comments will be available for public inspection at the PBGC's Communications and Public Affairs Department, suite 240 at the same address, between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. on business days.

Copies of the collection of information may be obtained without charge by writing to the PBGC's Communications and Public Affairs Department at the address given above or calling 202-326-4040. (TTY and TDD users may call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and ask to be connected to 202-326-4040.) The regulation on Annual Financial and Actuarial Information Reporting can be accessed on the PBGC's Web site at http://www.pbgc.gov.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Deborah C. Murphy, Attorney, Office of the General Counsel, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, 1200 K Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005-4026, 202-326-4024. (For TTY and TDD, call the Federal relay service toll-free at 1-800-877-8339 and request connection to 202-326-4024).

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Section 4010 of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) requires each member of a controlled group to submit identifying, financial, and actuarial information to the PBGC in certain circumstances. Reporting is required (1) if the aggregate unfunded vested benefits of all defined benefit pension plans maintained by the controlled group exceed $50 million, (2) if the controlled group maintains any plan with missed contributions aggregating more than $1 million (unless paid within a ten-day grace period), or (3) if the controlled group maintains any plan with funding waivers in excess of $1 million and any portion is still outstanding (taking into account certain credit balances in the funding standard account). The PBGC's regulation on Annual Financial and Actuarial Information Reporting (29 CFR Part 4010) implements section 4010.

The regulation requires the controlled group to file certain identifying information, certain financial information, each plan's actuarial valuation report, certain participant information, and a determination of the amount of each plan's benefit liabilities. The information submitted under the regulation allows the PBGC (1) to detect and monitor financial problems with the contributing sponsors that maintain severely underfunded pension plans and their controlled group members and (2) to respond quickly when it learns that a controlled group with severely underfunded pension plans intends to engage in a transaction that may significantly reduce the assets available to pay plan liabilities.

The collection of information under the regulation has been approved by OMB under control number 1212-0049 through December 31, 2001. The PBGC intends to request that OMB extend its approval for another three years. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

The PBGC estimates that an average of 70 controlled groups per year respond to this collection of information. The PBGC further estimates that the average annual burden of this collection of information is 7.9 hours and $10,000 per controlled group, for a total burden of 552 hours and $700,000.

The PBGC is soliciting public comments to—

  • 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;
  • Evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including through the use of appropriate automated, electronic, mechanical, or other technological collection techniques or other forms of information technology, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.
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Issued in Washington, DC, this 9th day of August, 2001.

Stuart Sirkin,

Director, Corporate Policy and Research Department, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation.

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[FR Doc. 01-20492 Filed 8-14-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7708-01-P