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Notice

Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection, Comment Request

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Minerals Management Service (MMS), Interior.

ACTION:

Notice of an extension of a currently approved information collection (OMB Control Number 1010-0103).

SUMMARY:

To comply with the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA) of 1995, we are inviting comments on a collection of information that we will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval. The information collection request (ICR) is titled “30 CFR part 206, subpart E—Indian Gas (Form MMS-4411, Safety Net Report).”

DATES:

Submit written comments on or before December 31, 2002.

ADDRESSES:

Submit written comments to Sharron L. Gebhardt, Regulatory Specialist, Minerals Management Service, Minerals Revenue Management, PO Box 25165, MS 320B2, Denver, Colorado 80225. If you use an overnight courier service, our courier address is Building 85, Room A-614, Denver Federal Center, Denver, Colorado 80225. You may also email your comments to us at mrm.comments@mms.gov. Include the title of the information collection and the OMB control number in the “Attention” line of your comment. Also include your name and return address. Submit electronic comments as an ASCII file avoiding the use of special characters and any form of encryption. If you do not receive a confirmation we have received your email, contact Ms. Gebhardt at (303) 231-3211.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Sharron L. Gebhardt, telephone (303) 231-3211, FAX (303) 231-3385 or email sharron.gebhardt@mms.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: 30 CFR part 206, subpart E—Indian Gas (Form MMS-4411, Safety Net Report).

OMB Control Number: 1010-0103.

Bureau Form Number: Form MMS-4411.

Abstract: The Department of the Interior (DOI) is responsible for matters relevant to mineral resource development on Federal and Indian lands and the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). The Secretary of the Interior (Secretary) is responsible for managing the production of minerals from Federal and Indian lands and the OCS, collecting royalties from lessees who produce minerals, and distributing the funds collected in accordance with applicable laws. The Secretary has an Indian trust responsibility to manage Indian lands and seek advice and information from Indian beneficiaries. MMS performs the royalty management functions and assists the Secretary in carrying out DOI's Indian trust responsibility.

On August 10, 1999, MMS published in the Federal Register (64 FR 43506) a final rulemaking titled “Amendments to Gas Valuation Regulations for Indian Leases,” with an effective date of January 1, 2000. These regulations are codified at 30 CFR part 206, subpart E. Form MMS-4411, Safety Net Report, governs the valuation for royalty purposes of natural gas produced from Indian leases. In 30 CFR 206.172(e), MMS requires that lessees submit Form MMS-4411 when gas production from an Indian lease is sold beyond the first index pricing point. The gas regulations apply to all gas production from Indian (tribal or allotted) oil and gas leases (except leases on the Osage Indian Reservation).

Form MMS-4411 ensures Indian mineral lessors receive the maximum revenues from mineral resources on their land consistent with the Secretary's trust responsibility and lease terms. It permits lessees to comply with the regulatory requirements at the time that royalties are due.

The safety net calculation establishes the minimum value, for royalty purposes, of natural gas production from Indian leases. This reporting requirement will assist the Indian lessor in receiving all the royalties that are due and aid MMS in its compliance efforts. The safety net price is calculated using prices received for gas sold downstream of the first index pricing point. It will include only the lessee's or the lessee's affiliate's arm's-length sales price, and it will not require detailed calculations for the costs of transportation. By June 30 following any calendar year, the lessee calculates a safety net price for each month of the previous calendar year. Lessees must calculate the safety net prices for each index zone where the lessee has an Indian lease. The safety net price will capture the significantly higher values for sales occurring beyond the index point. The lessee will submit its safety net prices to MMS annually (by June 30) using Form MMS-4411.

We are also revising this ICR to include reporting requirements that were inadvertently overlooked when the final rule was published. See the chart below for these requirements and associated burden hours. These reporting requirements are rare and unusual circumstances where the standard valuation procedures set out in the Indian gas valuation rule are not appropriate.

MMS is requesting OMB's approval to continue to collect this information. Not collecting this information would limit the Secretary's ability to discharge his/her duties and may also result in loss of royalty payments to the Indian lessor due to royalties not being collected on prices received under higher priced long-term sales contracts. Proprietary information submitted is protected, and there are no questions of a sensitive nature included in this information collection.

We have also changed the title of this ICR from “Safety Net Report” to “30 CFR part 206, subpart E—Indian Gas (Form MMS-4411, Safety Net Report),” to clarify the regulatory language we are covering under 30 CFR part 206.

Frequency: Annually.

Estimated Number and Description of Respondents: 29 Indian lessees/lessors.

Estimated Annual Reporting and Record keeping “Hour” Burden: 1,012 hours. Start Printed Page 66659

The following chart shows the breakdown of the burden hours by CFR section and paragraph:

30 CFR sectionReporting requirementBurden hours per responseAnnual number of responsesAnnual burden hours
206.172(e)(6)(i) and (iii)You must report the safety net price for each index zone to MMS on Form MMS-4411, Safety Net Report, no later than June 30 following each calendar year * * * MMS may order you to amend your safety net price within one year from the date your Form MMS-4411 is due or is filed, whichever is later2524600
206.172(f)(1), (2), and (3)An Indian tribe may ask MMS to exclude some or all of its leases from valuation under this section. . . . If an Indian tribe requests exclusion from an index zone for less than all of its leases, MMS will approve the request only if the excluded leases may be segregated into one or more groups based on separate fields within the reservation. . . . An Indian tribe may ask MMS to terminate exclusion of its leases from valuation under this section. . . . The Indian tribe's request to MMS under either paragraph (f)(1) or (2) of this section must be in the form of a tribal resolution40140
206.174(f)You may ask MMS for guidance in determining value. You may propose a valuation method to MMS. Submit all available data related to your proposal and any additional information MMS deems necessary40140
206.175(d)(4)You may request MMS approval of other methods for determining the quantity of residue gas and gas plant products allocable to each lease20120
Transportation Allowances
206.178(a)(1)(i)You are required to submit to MMS a copy of your arm's-length transportation contract(s) and all subsequent amendments to the contract(s) within 2 months of the date MMS receives your report which claims the allowance on the Form MMS-20148216
206.178(a)(2)(ii)As an alternative to paragraph (a)(2)(i) of this section, you may propose to MMS a cost allocation method based on the values of the products transported20120
206.178(a)(3)(i) & (ii)If your arm's-length transportation contract includes both gaseous and liquid products and the transportation costs attributable to each cannot be determined from the contract, you must propose an allocation procedure to MMS. You are required to submit all relevant data to support your allocation proposal40140
206.178(b)(2)(iv)After you have elected to use either method [depreciation with a return on under appreciated capital investment or a return on depreciable capital investment] for a transportation system, you may not later elect to change to the other alternative without MMS approval20120
206.178(b)(2)(iv)(A)Once you make an election [depreciation or unit of production method], you may not change methods without MMS approval20120
206.178(b)(3)(I)Except as provided in this paragraph, you may not take an allowance for transporting a product that is not royalty bearing without MMS approval40140
206.178(b)(3)(ii)As an alternative to the requirements of paragraph (b)(3)(i) of this section, you may propose to MMS a cost allocation method based on the values of the products transportedSee 206.178(a)(2)(ii)
206.178(b)(5)If you transport both gaseous and liquid products through the same transportation system, you must propose a cost allocation procedure to MMS. . . . You are required to submit all relevant data to support your proposalSee 206.178(a)(3)(i)(ii) and
Processing Allowances
206.180(a)(1)(i)You are required to submit to MMS a copy of your arm's-length processing contract(s) and all subsequent amendments to the contract(s) within 2 months of the date MMS receives your first report which deducts the allowance on the Form MMS-20148216
206.180(a)(3)If your arm's-length processing contract includes more than one gas plant product and the processing costs attributable to each product cannot be determined from the contract, you must propose an allocation procedure to MMS. . . . You are required to submit all relevant data to support your proposal40140
206.180(b)(2)(iv)After you elect to use either method [depreciation with a return on undepreciable capital investment or a return on depreciable capital investment] for a processing plant, you may not later elect to change to the other alternative without MMS approval20120
206.180(b)(2)(iv)(A)Once you make an election, you may not change [depreciation or unit of production] methods without MMS approval20120
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206.180(b)(3)Your processing allowance under this paragraph (b) must be determined based upon a calendar year or other period if you and MMS agree to an alternative20120
206.181(c)A proposed comparable processing fee submitted to either the Tribe and MMS (for tribal leases) or MMS (for allotted leases) with your supporting documentation submitted to MMS. If MMS does not take action on your proposal within 120 days, the proposal will be deemed to be denied and subject to appeal to the MMS Director under 30 CFR part 29040140
Total411,012

Estimated Annual Reporting and Record keeping “Non-hour Cost” Burden: We have identified no “non-hour” cost burdens.

Comments: The PRA (44 U.S.C. 3501, et seq.) provides 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. Before submitting an ICR to OMB, PRA Section 3506(c)(2)(A) requires each agency “* * * to provide notice * * * and otherwise consult with members of the public and affected agencies concerning each proposed collection of information * * *.” Agencies must specifically solicit comments to: (a) Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the agency to perform its duties, including whether the information is useful; (b) evaluate the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information; (c) enhance the quality, usefulness, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) minimize the burden on the respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

The PRA also requires agencies to estimate the total annual reporting “non-hour cost” burden to respondents or record keepers resulting from the collection of information. We have not identified non-hour cost burdens for this information collection. If you have costs to generate, maintain, and disclose this information, you should comment and provide your total capital and startup cost components or annual operation, maintenance, and purchase of service components. You should describe the methods you use to estimate major cost factors, including system and technology acquisition, expected useful life of capital equipment, discount rate(s), and the period over which you incur costs. Capital and startup costs include, among other items, computers and software you purchase to prepare for collecting information; monitoring, sampling, testing equipment; and record storage facilities. Generally, your estimates should not include equipment or services purchased: (i) Before October 1, 1995; (ii) to comply with requirements not associated with the information collection; (iii) for reasons other than to provide information or keep records for the Government; or (iv) as part of customary and usual business or private practices.

We will summarize written responses to this notice and address them in our ICR submission for OMB approval, including appropriate adjustments to the estimated burden. We will provide a copy of the ICR to you without charge upon request and the ICR will also be posted on our Web site at http://www.mrm.mms.gov/​Laws_​R_​D/​FRNotices/​FRInfColl.htm.

Public Comment Policy: We will post all comments in response to this notice on our Web site at http://www.mrm.mms.gov/​Laws_​R_​D/​FRNotices/​FRInfColl.htm. We will also make copies of the comments available for public review, including names and addresses of respondents, during regular business hours at our offices in Lakewood, Colorado. Individual respondents may request we withhold their home address from the public record, which we will honor to the extent allowable by law. There also may be circumstances in which we would withhold from the rulemaking record a respondent's identity, as allowable by law. If you request that we withhold your name and/or address, state this prominently at the beginning of your comment. However, we will not consider anonymous comments. We will make all submissions from organizations or businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations or businesses, available for public inspection in their entirety.

MMS Information Collection Clearance Officer: Jo Ann Lauterbach, (202) 208-7744.

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Dated: October 25, 2002.

Cathy J. Hamilton,

Acting Associate Director for Minerals Revenue Management.

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[FR Doc. 02-27715 Filed 10-31-02; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4310-MR-P