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Notice

Notice and Request for Comments

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Federal Railroad Administration, DOT.

ACTION:

Notice and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

In compliance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.), this notice announces that the Information Collection Requirement (ICR) abstracted below has been forwarded to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and comment. The ICR describes the nature of the information collection and its expected burden. The Federal Register notice with a 60-day comment period soliciting comments on the following collection of information was published on January 14, 2003 (68 FR 61884).

DATES:

Comments must be submitted on or before April 28, 2003.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mr. Robert Brogan, Office of Safety, Planning and Evaluation Division, RRS-21, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 17, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6292), or Ms. Debra Steward, Office of Information Technology and Productivity Improvement, RAD-20, Federal Railroad Administration, 1120 Vermont Ave., NW., Mail Stop 35, Washington, DC 20590 (telephone: (202) 493-6139). (These telephone numbers are not toll-free.)

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA), Pub. L. 104-13, section 2, 109 Stat. 163 (1995) (codified as revised at 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520), and its implementing regulations, 5 CFR part 1320, require Federal agencies to issue two notices seeking public comment on information collection activities before OMB may approve paperwork packages. 44 U.S.C. 3506, 3507; 5 CFR 1320.5, 1320.8(d)(1), 1320.12. On January 14, 2003, FRA published a 60-day notice in the Federal Register soliciting comment on ICRs that the agency was seeking OMB approval. See 68 FR 1884. FRA received no comments after issuing the 60-day notice referenced earlier. Accordingly, DOT announces that these information collection activities have been re-evaluated and certified under 5 CFR 1320.5(a) and forwarded to OMB for review and approval pursuant to 5 CFR 1320.12(c).

Before OMB decides whether to approve these proposed collections of information, it must provide 30 days for public comment. 44 U.S.C. 3507(b); 5 CFR 1320.12(d). Federal law requires OMB to approve or disapprove paperwork packages between 30 and 60 days after the 30 day notice is published. 44 U.S.C. 3507 (b)-(c); 5 CFR 1320.12(d); see also 60 FR 44978, 44983, Aug. 29, 1995. OMB believes that the 30 day notice informs the regulated community to file relevant comments and affords the agency adequate time to digest public comments before it renders a decision. 60 FR 44983, Aug. 29, 1995. Therefore, respondents should submit their respective comments to OMB within 30 days of publication to best ensure having their full effect. 5 CFR 1320.12(c); See also 60 FR 44983, Aug. 29, 1995.

The summaries below describe the nature of the information collection requirements (ICRs) and the expected burden. The revised requirements are being submitted for clearance by OMB as required by the PRA.

Title: U.S. DOT Crossing Inventory Form.

OMB Control Number: 2130-0017.

Type of Request: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Affected Public: Railroads.

Abstract: Form FRA F 6180.71 is a voluntary form and is used by States and railroads to periodically update certain site specific highway-rail crossing information which is then transmitted to FRA for input into the National Inventory File. This information has been collected on the U.S. DOT-AAR Crossing Inventory Form (previous designation of this form) since 1974 and maintained in the National Inventory File database since 1975. The primary purpose of the National Inventory File is to provide for the existence of a uniform database which can be merged with accidents data and used to analyze information for planning and implementation of crossing safety programs by public, private, and governmental agencies responsible for highway-rail crossing safety. Following the official establishment of the National Inventory in 1975, the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) assumed the principal responsibility as custodian for the maintenance and continued development of the U.S. DOT/AAR National Highway-Rail Crossing Inventory Program. The major goal of the Program is to provide Federal, State, and local governments, as well as the railroad industry, information for the improvement of safety at highway-rail crossings. Good management practices necessitate maintaining the database with current information. The data will continue to be useful only if maintained and updated as inventory changes occur. FRA previously cleared the reporting and recordkeeping burden for this form under Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Clearance Number 2130-0017. OMB approved the burden for this form through March 31, 2003. FRA is requesting a new three year approval from OMB for this information collection.

Annual Estimated Burden Hours: FRA estimates that the revised burden for these ICRs is 1,487 hours. The total recordkeeping and reporting burden for this information collection will actually decline by 1,617 hours from the previous total of 3,104 hours. The reduction in burden is due to a large increase in the estimated number of electronic records which will be kept over the next three years.

Addressee: Send comments regarding this information collection to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget, 725 Seventeenth Street, NW., Washington, DC, 20503, Attention: FRA Desk Officer.

Comments are invited on the following: Whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the Department, including whether the information will have practical utility; the accuracy of the Department's estimate of the burden of the proposed information collection; ways to enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and ways to minimize the burden of the collection of information on respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology.

A comment to OMB is best assured of having its full effect if OMB receives it within 30 days of publication of this notice in the Federal Register.

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Authority: 44 U.S.C. 3501-3520.

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Issued in Washington, DC on March 21, 2003.

Kathy A. Weiner,

Director, Office of Information Technology and Support Systems, Federal Railroad Administration.

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[FR Doc. 03-7296 Filed 3-26-03; 8:45 am]

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