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Notice

Information Collection Activity; Comment Request

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AGENCY:

Rural Utilities Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. chapter 35, as amended), the Rural Utilities Service (RUS) invites comments on this information collection for which RUS intends to request approval from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

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DATES:

Comments on this notice must be received by February 28, 2003.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

F. Lamont Heppe, Jr., Program Development & Regulatory Analysis, Rural Utilities Service, USDA, 1400 Independence Ave., SW., STOP 1522, Room 4034 South Building, Washington, DC 20250-1522. Telephone: (202) 720-0736. FAX: (202) 720-4120.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: 7 CFR Part 1753, Telecommunications System Construction Policies and Procedures.

OMB Control Number: 0572-0059.

Type of Request: Reinstatement of a previously approved collection for which approval has expired.

Abstract: In order to facilitate the programmatic interest of the RE Act, and, in order to assure that loans made or guaranteed by RUS are adequately secured, RUS, as a secured lender, has established certain forms for materials, equipment and construction of electric and telecommunications systems. The use of standard forms, construction contracts, and procurement procedures helps assure RUS that appropriate standards and specifications are maintained, RUS' loan security is not adversely affected; and the loan and loan guarantee funds are used effectively and for the intended purposes.

Estimate of Burden: Public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 1 hour per response.

Respondents: Business or other for-profit and non-profit institutions.

Estimated Number of Respondents: 150.

Estimated Number of Responses per Respondent: 1.

Estimate Total Annual Burden on Respondents: 3,011 hours.

Copies of this information collection can be obtained from Dawn Wolfgang, Program Development and Regulatory Analysis, Rural Utilities Service at (202) 720-0812. Comments are invited on (a) 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; (b) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of burden including the validity of the methodology and assumption used; (c) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (d) ways to 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 on other forms of information technology.

All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

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Dated: December 23, 2002.

Curtis M. Anderson,

Deputy Administrator as Acting Administrator, Rural Utilities Service.

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[FR Doc. 02-32826 Filed 12-27-02; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-15-P