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Notice

Commission Information Collection Activities, Proposed Collection; Comment Request; Extension

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Start Preamble January 22, 2003.

AGENCY:

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

In compliance with the requirements of Section 3506(c)(2)(a) of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A), the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (Commission) is soliciting public comment on the specific aspects of the information collection described below.

DATES:

Comments on the collection of information are due by March 24, 2003.

ADDRESSES:

Copies of the proposed collection of information can be obtained from Michael Miller, Office of the Chief Information Officer, CI-1, 888 First Street NE., Washington, DC 20426. Comments may be filed either in paper format or electronically. Those parties filing electronically do not need to make a paper filing.

For paper filings, the original and 14 copies of such comments should be submitted to the Office of the Secretary, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, 888 First Street, NE., Washington, DC 20426 and refer to Docket No. IC03-539-000.

Documents filed electronically via the Internet must be prepared in WordPerfect, MS Word, Portable Document Format, or ASCII format. To file the document, access the Commission's Web site at http://www.ferc.gov and click on “Make an E-filing,” and then follow the instructions for each screen. First time users will have to establish a user name and password. The Commission will send an automatic acknowledgment to the sender's e-mail address upon receipt of comments. User assistance for electronic filings is available at 202-502-8258 or by e-mail to efiling@ferc.gov Comments should not be submitted to the e-mail address.

All comments may be viewed, printed or downloaded remotely via the Internet through FERC's homepage using the Start Printed Page 4184FERRIS link. For user assistance, contact FERCOnlineSupport@ferc.gov or toll-free at (866) 208-3676 or for TTY, contact (202)502-8659.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Michael Miller may be reached by telephone at (202)502-8415, by fax at (202)208-2425, and by e-mail at michael.miller@ferc.gov.

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The information collected under the requirements of FERC-539 “Gas Pipeline Certificates: Import/Export” (OMB No. 1902-0062) is used by the Commission to implement the statutory provisions of Section 3 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA), 15 U.S.C. 717-717w. Section 3 requires prior authorization before reporting or importing natural gas from or to the United States. Section 3 authorizes the Commission to grant an application, in whole or in part, with modifications and upon terms and conditions as the Commission may find necessary or appropriate. The 1992 amendments to Section 3 of the NGA concern the importation or exportation from/to a nation which has a free trade agreement with the United States. With the passage of both the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Canadian Free Trade Agreement, the construction, operation and siting of import or export facilities are also the subject of the Commission's regulatory focus.

In Order No. 608, the Commission created voluntary procedures whereby prospective applicants could use a collaborative process to resolve significant issues prior to filing an application. This collaborative process allows applicants and interested parties to come together and come to mutual agreements that may help to defuse some of the controversial issues which may otherwise arise once an application has been filed with the Commission. The pre-filing consultation process combines efforts to address NGA issues with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process into a single pre-filing collaborative process that also includes the administrative processes associated with the Clean Water Act, the National Historic Preservation Act, the Endangered Species Act and other relevant statutes. Combining the pre-filing consultation and environmental review into a single pre-filing process simplifies and expedites the authorization of gas facilities and services.

The Commission uses the information to determine the appropriateness of the proposed facilities and their location. The determination involves among other things, an examination of adequacy of design, cost, reliability, redundancy and environmental acceptability. This information is necessary for the Commission to make a determination that the facilities and location are consistent with the public interest. The Commission implements these filing requirements in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) under 18 CFR part 153.

Action: The Commission is requesting a three-year extension of the current expiration date, with no changes to the existing collection of data.

Burden Statement: Public reporting burden for this collection is estimated as:

Number of respondents annuallyNumber of responses per respondentAverage burden hours per responseTotal Annual burden hours
(1)(2)(3)(1)×(2)×(3)
1212412,886

Estimated cost burden to respondents: 2,886 hours / 2,080 hours per year × $117,041 per year = $162,394. The cost per respondent is equal to $ 13,533.

The reporting burden includes the total time, effort, or financial resources expended to generate, maintain, retain, disclose, or provide the information including: (1) Reviewing instructions; (2) developing, acquiring, installing, and utilizing technology and systems for the purposes of collecting, validating, verifying, processing, maintaining, disclosing and providing information; (3) adjusting the existing ways to comply with any previously applicable instructions and requirements; (4) training personnel to respond to a collection of information; (5) searching data sources; (6) completing and reviewing the collection of information; and (7) transmitting, or otherwise disclosing the information.

The estimate of cost for respondents is based upon salaries for professional and clerical support, as well as direct and indirect overhead costs. Direct costs include all costs directly attributable to providing this information, such as administrative costs and the cost for information technology. Indirect or overhead costs are costs incurred by an organization in support of its mission. These costs apply to activities which benefit the whole organization rather than any one particular function or activity.

Comments are invited on: (1) Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Commission, including whether the information will have practical utility; (2) the accuracy of the agency's estimate of the burden of the proposed collection of information, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information to be collected; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, including 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.

Start Signature

Magalie R. Salas,

Secretary.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 03-1927 Filed 1-27-03; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6717-01-P