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Notice

Proposed Extension of Information Collection; Comment Request; Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 90-1, Pooled Separate Accounts

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Employee Benefits Security Administration, Department of Labor.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden, conducts a preclearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA 95). This program helps to ensure that the Department can properly assess the impact of its information collection requirements on respondents and minimize the reporting burden (time and financial resources) on the public and that the public can understand the Department's collection instruments and provide the requested data in the desired format. Currently, the Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) is soliciting comments on a proposed extension of the information collection request (ICR) incorporated in Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption (PTE) 90-1, Pooled Separate Accounts. A copy of the ICR may be obtained by contacting the office listed in the ADDRESSES section of this notice.

DATES:

Written comments must be submitted to the office shown in the ADDRESSES section below on or before June 13, 2006.

ADDRESSES:

Direct all written comments to Susan G. Lahne, Office of Policy and Research, Employee Benefits Security Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Room N-5718, Washington, DC 20210, (210) 693-8410, FAX (202) 219-4745 (the foregoing are not toll-free numbers). Comments may also be submitted electronically to the following Internet e-mail address: ebsa.opr@dol.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

PT E 90-1 provides an exemption from certain provisions of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) relating to transactions involving insurance company pooled separate accounts in which employee benefit plans participate. Without the Start Printed Page 19545exemption, sections 406 and 407(a) of ERISA and section 4975(c)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code might prohibit a party in interest to a plan from furnishing goods or services to an insurance company pooled separate account in which the plan has an interest, or prohibit engaging in other transactions. Under the exemption, persons who are parties in interest to a plan that invests in a pooled separate account, such as a service provider, may engage in otherwise prohibited transactions with the separate account if the plan's participation in the separate account does not exceed specified limits and other conditions are met. These other conditions include a requirement that the party in interest not be the insurance company, or an affiliate thereof, that holds the plan assets in its pooled separate account or other separate account. The terms of the transaction to which the exemption is applied must be at least as favorable to the pooled separate account as those that would be obtained in a separate arms-length transaction with an unrelated party, and the insurance company must maintain records of any transaction to which the exemption applies for a period of six years. This ICR covers this recordkeeping requirement.

The Department previously submitted this information collection to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in an ICR that was approved under the OMB Control Number 1210-0083. The current approval is scheduled to expire on July 31, 2006.

II. Desired Focus of Comments

The Department is particularly interested in comments that:

  • Evaluate whether the proposed collection of information is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information will have practical utility;
  • Evaluate 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;
  • Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and
  • 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 or other forms of information technology, e.g., by permitting electronic submission of responses.

III. Current Action

This notice requests comments on the proposed extension of the ICR included in PTE 90-1. The Department is not proposing or implementing changes to the existing ICR at this time. The following summarizes the ICR and the current burden estimates:

Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection of information.

Agency: Employee Benefits Security Administration, Department of Labor.

Title: PTE 90-1—Pooled Separate Accounts.

OMB Number: 1210-0083.

Affected Public: Individuals or households; Business or other for-profit; Not-for-profit institutions.

Respondents: 130.

Frequency of Response: On occasion.

Responses: 130.

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 12.

Comments submitted in response to this notice will be summarized and/or included in the request for OMB approval of the information collection request; they will also become a matter of public record.

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Dated: April 10, 2006.

Susan G. Lahne,

Office of Policy and Research, Employee Benefits Security Administration.

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[FR Doc. E6-5566 Filed 4-13-06; 8:45 am]

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