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Rule

Clarification of Address for Documents Filed With EPA's Environmental Appeals Board

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Final rule.

SUMMARY:

EPA is amending the regulations that pertain to filing appeals and other documents with the Environmental Appeals Board (EAB) under the Consolidated Rules of Practice Governing the Administrative Assessment of Civil Penalties and the Revocation/Termination or Suspension of Permits (CROP). Specifically, EPA is amending two regulations that specify the addresses where notices of appeal, accompanying briefs, and other documents must be filed, to provide that any filings made through the U.S. mail service must be addressed to the EAB's mailing address, and that any filings made by hand-delivery or courier must be made to the EAB's hand-delivery address. The amendments are intended to make the regulations consistent with current Agency practice and to provide clear guidance on the proper address to use under various circumstances.

EFFECTIVE DATE:

This final rule is effective on December 28, 2004.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Eurika Durr, Clerk of the Board. Telephone number: (202) 233-0122. E-mail: Durr.Eurika@epa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

This action is directed to the public in Start Printed Page 77638general and to anyone who may want to file documents with the EAB. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity or action, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

I. Background

A. What Action Is the Agency Taking?

The Consolidated Rules of Practice Governing the Administrative Assessment of Civil Penalties and the Revocation/Termination or Suspension of Permits (CROP), 40 CFR part 22, govern the filing of certain appeals with the EAB, and provide, in pertinent part, that:

[A]ny party may appeal any adverse order or ruling of the Presiding Officer by filing an original and one copy of a notice of appeal and an accompanying appellate brief with the Environmental Appeals Board (Clerk of the Board (Mail Code 1103B), United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460. Hand deliveries may be made at Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW.

40 CFR 22.30(a)(l). The regulation could be read as implying that hand deliveries may be made at either of the two specified addresses. However, the address referenced in the regulation as “1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW.” is that of the EPA mailing center, which no longer accepts hand deliveries of mail addressed to the EAB. The EPA mailing center will reject any document addressed to the EAB that is delivered by hand or courier, and such document will not be properly filed until it has been re-delivered to the physical offices of the EAB at Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005. The purpose of the amendment is to delete the regulatory language at 40 CFR 22.30(a)(1) quoted above, and to replace it with the following language:

[A]ny party may appeal any adverse order or ruling of the Presiding Officer by filing an original and one copy of a notice of appeal and an accompanying appellate brief with the Environmental Appeals Board. Appeals filed through the U.S. Postal Service (except by U.S. Postal Express Mail) shall be addressed to the Environmental Appeals Board at its official mailing address: Clerk of the Board (Mail Code 1103B), United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460. Appeals delivered by hand or courier (including deliveries by U.S. Postal Express Mail or by a commercial delivery service) shall be delivered to Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005.

The CROP further provides, in pertinent part, that:

The original and one copy of each document intended to be part of the record shall be filed * * * with the Clerk of the Board when the proceeding is before the Environmental Appeals Board. A document is filed when it is received by the appropriate Clerk.

40 CFR 22.5(a)(1). According to 40 CFR 22.3, the Clerk of the Board “means the Clerk of the Environmental Appeals Board, Mail Code 1103B, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460.” The purpose of the amendment is to amend 40 CFR 22.5(a)(I) by adding the following sentence after the regulatory language quoted above:

Documents filed in proceedings before the Environmental Appeals Board shall either be sent by U.S. mail (except by U.S. Express Mail) to the official mailing address of the Clerk of the Board set forth at 22.3 or delivered by hand or courier (including deliveries by U.S. Postal Express or by a commercial delivery service) to Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005.

B. How Can I Get Additional Information About This Action?

You may obtain additional information about this action on the EAB's Internet home page at http://www.epa.gov/​eab.

C. What Is the Agency's Authority for Taking This Action?

EPA is issuing this document under its general rulemaking authority. Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1970 (5 U.S.C. app.). In addition, section 553 of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B), provides that, when an agency for good cause finds that notice and public procedure are impracticable, unnecessary or contrary to the public interest, the agency may issue a rule without providing notice and an opportunity for public comment. EPA has determined that this amendment is technical and non-substantive, and therefore, that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(B) for making this rule final without prior proposal and opportunity for comment. EPA also finds good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553(d) to make this rule effective on the date of publication.

II. Do Any of the Regulatory Assessment Requirements Apply to This Action?

No. This final rule implements a technical amendment to 40 CFR part 22 to provide clear guidance on the hand-delivery address for filings with the EAB, and does not otherwise impose or amend any requirements. This action is not a “significant regulatory action” and is therefore not subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866, entitled Regulatory Planning and Review (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993). This rule does not contain any information collection requirements that require review and approval by OMB pursuant to the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Because this action is not economically significant as defined by section 3(f) of Executive Order 12866, this action is not subject to Executive Order 13045, Protection of Children from Environmental Health Risks and Safety Risks (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997). Since the Agency has made a “good cause” finding that this action is not subject to notice-and-comment requirements under the APA or any other statute, this action is not subject to provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.), or to sections 202 and 205 of the Unfunded Mandate Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA) (Public Law 104-94). In addition, this action does not impose any enforceable duty, contain any unfunded mandate, or impose any significant or unique impact on small governments as described in the UMRA of 1995. This rule will not have substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government, as specified in Executive Order 13132, entitled Federalism (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999). Similarly, this rule will not have substantial direct effects on tribal governments, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities between the Federal government and Indian tribes, as specified in Executive Order 13175, entitled Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments (65 FR 67249, November 6, 2000). This action does not involve any technical standards that require the Agency's consideration of voluntary consensus standards pursuant to section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (NTTAA), Public Law 104-113, section 12(d) (15 U.S.C. 272 note). This rule is not subject to Executive Order 13211, entitled Actions Concerning Regulations That Significantly Affect Energy Supply, Distribution, or Use (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001), because this action is not a significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866.

III. Will EPA Submit This Final Rule to Congress and the Comptroller General?

Yes. The Congressional Review Act (CRA), 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., generally provides that, before a rule may take effect, the agency that promulgates the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, to each Start Printed Page 77639House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. CRA section 808 provides that the issuing agency may make a rule effective sooner than otherwise provided by the CRA if the agency makes a good cause finding that notice and public procedure are impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest. EPA has made such a good cause finding, including the reasons therefor, and has established the date of publication as the effective date. As stated previously, EPA will submit a report containing this rule and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States, prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

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List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 22

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Dated: December 20, 2004.

Richard McKeown,

Chief of Staff.

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is amended as follows:

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1. The authority citation for part 22 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 7 U.S.C. 136(l); 15 U.S.C. 2615; 33 U.S.C. 1319, 1342, 1361, 1415 and 1418; 42 U.S.C. 300g-3(g), 6912, 6925, 6928, 6991e and 6992d, 42 U.S.C. 7413(d), 7524(c), 7545(d), 7547, 7601 and 7607(a), 9609, and 11045.

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2. Section 22.5 is amended by adding a sentence after the second sentence in paragraph (a)(1) to read as follows:

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Filing, service, and form of all filed documents, business confidentiality claims.

(a) * * *

(1) * * * Documents filed in proceedings before the Environmental Appeals Board shall either be sent by U.S. mail (except by U.S. Express Mail) to the official mailing address of the Clerk of the Board set forth at § 22.3 or delivered by hand or courier (including deliveries by U.S. Postal Express or by a commercial delivery service) to Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005. * * *

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3. Section 22.30 is amended by removing the first two sentences of paragraph (a)(1) and adding three new sentences in their place to read as follows:

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Appeal from or review of initial decision.

(a) * * *

(1) Within 30 days after the initial decision is served, any party may appeal any adverse order or ruling of the Presiding Officer by filing an original and one copy of a notice of appeal and an accompanying appellate brief with the Environmental Appeals Board. Appeals sent by U.S. mail (except by U.S. Postal Express Mail) shall be addressed to the Environmental Appeals Board at its official mailing address: Clerk of the Board (Mail Code 1103B), United States Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20460. Appeals delivered by hand or courier (including deliveries by U.S. Postal Express Mail or by a commercial delivery service) shall be delivered to Suite 600, 1341 G Street, NW., Washington, DC 20005. * * *

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[FR Doc. 04-28359 Filed 12-27-04; 8:45 am]

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