Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, Interior.
Proposed rule; public comment period and opportunity for public hearing on proposed amendment.
We are announcing receipt of a proposed amendment to the Utah regulatory program (hereinafter, the “Utah program”) under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA or the Act). The State proposes to revise provisions of the Utah Code Annotated (UCA) that pertain to submitting permit applications and reclamation plans, and to add new provisions for providing certain assistance to operators who mine no more than 300,000 tons of coal. Utah intends to revise its program to be consistent with SMCRA, to clarify wording, and to recodify parts of the Utah Code.
This document gives the times and locations that the Utah program and proposed amendment to that program are available for your inspection, the comment period during which you may submit written comments on the amendment, and the procedures that we will follow for the public hearing, if one is requested.
We will accept written comments on this amendment until 4:00 p.m., mountain standard time February 5, 2003. If requested, we will hold a public hearing on the amendment on January 31, 2003. We will accept requests to speak until 4:00 p.m., mountain standard time on January 21, 2003.
You should mail or hand-deliver written comments and requests to speak at the hearing to James F. Fulton at the address listed below.
You may review copies of the Utah program, this amendment, a listing of any scheduled public hearings, and all written comments received in response to this document at the addresses listed below during normal business hours, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. You may receive one free copy of the amendment by contacting Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM's) Denver Field Division.
James F. Fulton, Chief, Denver Field Division, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, 1999 Broadway, Suite 3320, Denver, Colorado 80202-5733, Telephone: (303) 844-1400, extension 1424, E-mail: email@example.com.
Lowell P. Braxton, Director, Division of Oil, Gas and Mining, 1594 West North Temple, Suite 1210, P.O. Box 145801, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-5801, Telephone: (801) 538-5340, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.Start Further Info
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
James F. Fulton, Chief, Denver Field Division, telephone: (303) 844-1400, extension 1424. Internet: email@example.com.End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information
I. Background on the Utah Program
II. Description of the Proposed Amendment
III. Public Comment Procedures
IV. Procedural DeterminationsStart Printed Page 522
I. Background on the Utah 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 State 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 Utah program on January 21, 1981. You can find background information on the Utah program, including the Secretary's findings, the disposition of comments, and the conditions of approval of the Utah program in the January 21, 1981, Federal Register (46 FR 5899). You can also find later actions concerning Utah's program and program amendments at 30 CFR 944.15 and 944.30.
II. Description of the Proposed Amendment
By letter dated October 22, 2002, Utah sent us a proposed amendment to its program (UT-042-FOR, administrative record number UT-1171) under SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1201 et seq.). Utah sent the amendment in response to a June 19, 1997, letter (administrative record number UT-1093) that we sent to the State in accordance with 30 CFR 732.17(c). The State previously addressed most of the topics included in our June 19, 1997, letter in amendment UT-038-FOR, which we approved in the April 24, 2001, Federal Register (66 FR 20600). Some of the topics described in that letter changed the small operator assistance program (SOAP) by raising the limit on coal production from 100,000 tons to 300,000 tons and describing changes in the type of assistance available to eligible operators under that program. We noted in our letter that those changes might require changes in State statutes. In Utah's case, it must change the SOAP provisions in the Utah Code Annotated before it can change its corresponding rules. This amendment proposes to make those SOAP changes in Utah's Code. In addition, the State proposes to make other changes at its own initiative throughout the same section of its Code that clarify the wording and recodify certain parts. The proposed clarifications involve rewording and restructuring sentences and phrases and changing punctuation. The full text of the program amendment is available for you to read at the locations listed above under ADDRESSES.
Specific changes Utah proposes to make to UCA 40-10-10 in this amendment include: Clarifying 40-10-10-(1), which describes application fees; designating new 40-10-10(2)(a) and clarifying it and (2)(a)(ii), (iii), (iv) and (vi), which generally describe how permit applications and reclamation plans are to be submitted to the State as well as ownership and right of entry information to be included with permit applications and reclamation plans; clarifying 40-10-10(2)(b), (c), and (d) and recodifying subordinate parts of those subsections, which describe the maps and information about legal right of entry, probable hydrologic consequences and other hydrology information, and characteristics of the coal to be mined that must be included in permit applications; removing existing 40-10-10(3) and replacing it with new 40-10-10(3)(a), (a)(i) through (a)(vi), (b), and (c), all of which pertain to assistance available to eligible small operators to gather and pay for certain baseline and survey data and limitations on that assistance; clarifying and recodifying 40-10-10(4)(a) and (b), which address availability of information pertaining to the coal; clarifying 40-10-10(5), which describes how to file a permit application; clarifying and recodifying 40-10-10(6)(a), (b), (b)(i) and (ii), which describe the proof and type of insurance required to accompany a permit application; and clarifying 40-10-10(7), which requires a blasting plan to be part of a permit application.
III. Public Comment Procedures
Under the provisions of 30 CFR 732.17(h), we are seeking your comments on whether the amendment satisfies the applicable program approval criteria of 30 CFR 732.15. If we approve the amendment, it will become part of the Utah program.
Send your written or electronic comments to OSM at the address given above. Your comments should be specific, pertain only to the issues proposed in this rulemaking, and include explanations in support of your recommendations. We will not consider or respond to your comments when developing the final rule if they are received after the close of the comment period (see Dates). We will make every attempt to log all comments into the administrative record, but comments delivered to an address other than the Denver Field Division may not be logged in.
Please submit Internet comments as an ASCII file avoiding the use of special characters and any form of encryption. Please also include “Attn: SATS No. UT-042-FOR” and your name and return address in your Internet message. If you do not receive a confirmation that we have received your Internet message, contact the Denver Field Division at (303) 844-1400, extension 1424.
Availability of Comments
We will make comments, including names and addresses of respondents, available for public review during normal business hours. We will not consider anonymous comments. If individual respondents request confidentiality, we will honor their request to the extent allowable by law. Individual respondents who wish to withhold their name or address from public review, except for the city or town, must state this prominently at the beginning of their 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 review in their entirety.
If you wish to speak at the public hearing, contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT by 4:00 p.m., mountain standard time, by January 21, 2003. If you are disabled and need special accommodations to attend a public hearing, contact the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. We will arrange the location and time of the hearing with those persons requesting the hearing. If no one requests an opportunity to speak, we will not hold the hearing.
To assist the transcriber and ensure an accurate record, we request, if possible, that each person who speaks at a public hearing provide us with a written copy of his or her comments. The public hearing will continue on the specified date until everyone scheduled to speak has been given an opportunity to be heard. If you are in the audience and have not been scheduled to speak and wish to do so, you will be allowed to speak after those who have been scheduled. We will end the hearing after everyone scheduled to speak and others present in the audience who wish to speak, have been heard. Start Printed Page 523
If only one person requests an opportunity to speak, we may hold a public meeting rather than a public hearing. If you wish to meet with us to discuss the amendment, please request a meeting by contacting the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT. All such meetings are open to the public and, if possible, we will post notices of meetings at the locations listed under ADDRESSES. We will make a written summary of each meeting a part of the administrative record.
IV. Procedural Determinations
Executive Order 12630—Takings
This rule does not have takings implications. This determination is based on the analysis performed for the Federal regulations.
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 12988—Civil Justice Reform
The Department of the Interior conducted the reviews required by section 3 of Executive Order 12988 and determined that 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 because each 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 the Federal regulations at 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 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.
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
This rule does not require an environmental impact statement because section 702(d) of SMCRA (30 U.S.C. 1292(d)) provides that agency decisions on proposed State regulatory program provisions do not constitute major Federal actions within the meaning of section 102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)).
Paperwork Reduction Act
This rule does not contain information collection requirements that require approval by OMB under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3507 et seq.).
Regulatory Flexibility Act
The Department of the Interior certifies 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 on Federal regulations for which an economic analysis was prepared and certification made that such regulations would not have a significant economic effect on a substantial number of small entities. 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 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; and (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 on Federal regulations for which an analysis was prepared and a determination made that the Federal regulations were not considered a major rule.
This rule will not impose an unfunded mandate on State, local, or tribal governments or the private sector of $100 million or more in any given year. This determination is based upon the fact that the State submittal, which is the subject of this rule, is based on Federal regulations for which an analysis was prepared and a determination made that the Federal regulations did not impose an unfunded mandate.Start List of Subjects
List of Subjects in 30 CFR Part 944
- Intergovernmental relations
- Surface mining
- Underground mining
Dated: October 31, 2002.
Regional Director, Western Regional Coordinating Center.
[FR Doc. 03-158 Filed 1-3-03; 8:45 am]
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