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Rule

Maryland Regulatory Program

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM), Interior.

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

OSM is approving an amendment to the Maryland regulatory program (Maryland program) under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA or the Act). The amendment revises the Maryland statutes to require the use of financial disclosure forms by the Land Reclamation Committee. The amendment satisfies a required program amendment at 30 CFR 920.16(l). The amendment is intended to revise the Maryland program to be no less effective than the corresponding Federal regulations.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

October 5, 2001.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

George Rieger, Manager, Oversight and Inspection Office, Appalachian Regional Coordinating Center, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 3 Parkway Center, Pittsburgh PA 15220, Telephone: (412) 937-2153, E-mail: grieger@osmre.gov

Maryland Bureau of Mines, 160 South Water Street, Frostburg, Maryland 21532, Telephone: (301) 689-4136

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background on the Maryland Program

II. Submission of the Amendment

III. Director's Findings

IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments

V. Director's Decision

VI. Procedural Determinations

I. Background on the Maryland Program

Section 503(a) of the Act permits a State to assume primacy for the regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations on non-Federal and non-Indian lands within its borders by demonstrating that its program includes, among other things, “* * * a State law which provides for the regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations in accordance with the requirements of the Act * * *” and “rules and regulations consistent with regulations issued by the Secretary” pursuant to the Act. See 30 U.S.C. 1253(a)(1) and (7). On the basis of these criteria, the Secretary of the Interior conditionally approved the Maryland program on February 18, 1982. You can find background information on the Maryland program, including the Secretary's findings, the disposition of comments, and the conditions of approval in the February 18, 1982, Federal Register (47 FR 7214). You can find subsequent actions concerning the conditions of approval and program amendments at 30 CFR 920.15 and 920.16.

II. Submission of the Amendment

By an undated letter received by OSM on May 7, 2001 (Administrative Record No. 578-12), Maryland submitted a copy of House Bill 984 as a formal proposed amendment to its program. The House Bill was enacted to require members of the Land Reclamation Committee to file a United States Department of Interior State Employee Statement of Employment and Financial Interests. Maryland submitted the formal amendment to satisfy a required amendment at 30 CFR 920.16(l). We announced the proposed amendment in the June 12, 2001, Federal Register (66 FR 31571), and in the same document opened the public comment period and provided an opportunity for a public hearing on the adequacy of the proposed amendment. The public comment period closed on July 12, 2001. We did not receive any public comments. No one requested an opportunity to speak at a public hearing, so no hearing was held.

III. Director's Findings

Set forth below, pursuant to SMCRA and the Federal regulations at 30 CFR 732.15 and 732.17, are the Director's findings concerning the amendments to the Maryland permanent regulatory program.

Maryland is adding new paragraph 4. to Section 15-204 of the Annotated Code of the Public General Laws of Maryland, Environment, as follows:

(4) Members of the Land Reclamation Committee shall file a United States Department of Interior State Employee Statement of Employment and Financial Interests.

As a result of this addition, existing paragraph (4) is re-numbered as paragraph (5).

We find that the revision is no less effective than the Federal regulations at 30 CFR 705.11(a) and 705.17(a).

IV. Summary and Disposition of Comments

Federal Agency Comments

On May 10, 2001, we asked for comments from various Federal agencies who may have an interest in the Maryland amendment (Administrative Record Number MD-578-13). We solicited comments in accordance with section 503(b) of SMCRA and 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(i) of the Federal regulations. No responses were received.

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Pursuant to 30 CFR 732.17(h)(11)(ii), OSM is required to obtain the written concurrence of the EPA with respect to Start Printed Page 50828those provisions of the proposed program amendment that relate to air or water quality standards promulgated under the authority of the Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.) or the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.). The Director has determined that this amendment contains no such provisions and that EPA concurrence is therefore unnecessary. Therefore OSM did not request EPA's concurrence.

Public Comments

No comments were received in response to our request for public comments.

V. Directors Decision

Based on the findings above we are approving the amendments to the Maryland program. We are also removing the required amendment at 30 CFR 920.16(l). We find that good cause exists under 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3) to make this final rule effective immediately. Section 503(a) of SMCRA requires that the State's program demonstrate that the State has the capability of carrying out the provisions of the Act and meeting its purposes. Making this regulation effective immediately will expedite that process. Maryland's program regarding this action is now consistent with the intent of the Federal regulations. Consistency of State and Federal standards is required by SMCRA.

VI. Procedural Determinations

Executive Order 12866—Regulatory Planning and Review

This rule is exempted from review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under Executive Order 12866.

Executive Order 12630—Takings

This rule does not have takings implications. This determination is based on the analysis performed for the counterpart Federal regulation.

Executive Order 13132—Federalism

This rule does not have federalism implications. SMCRA delineates the roles of the Federal and State governments with regard to the regulation of surface coal mining and reclamation operations. One of the purposes of SMCRA is to “establish a nationwide program to protect society and the environment from the adverse effects of surface coal mining operations.” Section 503(a)(1) of SMCRA requires that State laws regulating surface coal mining and reclamation operations be “in accordance with” the requirements of SMCRA, and section 503(a)(7) requires that State programs contain rules and regulations “consistent with” regulations issued by the Secretary pursuant to SMCRA.

Executive Order 12988—Civil Justice Reform

The Department of the Interior has conducted the reviews required by section 3 of Executive Order 12988 and has determined that, to the extent allowed by law, this rule meets the applicable standards of subsections (a) and (b) of that section. However, these standards are not applicable to the actual language of State regulatory programs and program amendments since each such program is drafted and promulgated by a specific State, not by OSM. Under sections 503 and 505 of SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1253 and 1255) and 30 CFR 730.11, 732.15, and 732.17(h)(10), decisions on proposed State regulatory programs and program amendments submitted by the States must be based solely on a determination of whether the submittal is consistent with SMCRA and its implementing Federal regulations and whether the other requirements of 30 CFR parts 730, 731, and 732 have been met.

Executive Order 13211—Regulations That Significantly Affect The Supply, Distribution, or Use of Energy

On May 18, 2001, the President issued Executive Order 13211 which requires agencies to prepare a Statement of Energy Effects for a rule that is (1) considered significant under Executive Order 12866, and (2) likely to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy. Because this rule is exempt from review under Executive Order 12866 and is not expected to have a significant adverse effect on the supply, distribution, or use of energy, a Statement of Energy Effects is not required.

National Environmental Policy Act

Section 702(d) of SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1292(d)) provides that a decision on a proposed State regulatory program provision does not constitute a major Federal action within the meaning of section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)). A determination has been made that such decisions are categorically excluded from the NEPA process (516 DM 8.4.A).

Paperwork Reduction Act

This rule does not contain information collection requirements that require approval by the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3507 et seq.).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Department of the Interior has determined that this rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.). The State submittal which is the subject of this rule is based upon counterpart Federal regulations for which an economic analysis was prepared and certification made that such regulations would not have a significant economic effect upon a substantial number of small entities. Accordingly, this rule will ensure that existing requirements previously promulgated by OSM will be implemented by the State. In making the determination as to whether this rule would have a significant economic impact, the Department relied upon the data and assumptions for the counterpart Federal regulations.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act

This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804(2), the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act. This rule:

a. Does not have an annual effect on the economy of $100 million.

b. Will not cause a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, Federal, State, or local government agencies, or geographic regions.

c. Does not have significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or the ability of U.S. based enterprises to compete with foreign-based enterprises. This determination is based upon the fact that the State submittal which is the subject of this rule is based upon counterpart Federal regulations for which an analysis was prepared and a determination made that the Federal regulation was not considered a major rule.

Unfunded Mandates

This rule will not impose a cost of $100 million or more in any given year on any governmental entity or the private sector.

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List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 920

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Dated: August 7, 2001.

Tim L. Dieringer,

Acting Regional Director, Appalachian Regional Coordinating Center.

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For the reasons set out in the preamble, title 30, chapter VII, subchapter T of the Code of Federal

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PART 920—MARYLAND

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1. The authority citation for part 920 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 30 U.S.C. 1201 et seq.

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2. Section 920.15 is amended in the table by adding a new entry in chronological order by “Date of Final Publication” to read as follows:

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Approval of Maryland regulatory program amendments.
* * * * *
Original amendment submission dateDate of final publicationCitation/description
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
May 7, 2001October 5, 2001Section 15-204 (4)(5) of the Annotated Code of the Public General Laws of Maryland, Environment.
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3. § 920.16 is amended by removing and reserving paragraph (l).

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[FR Doc. 01-25006 Filed 10-4-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4310-05-P