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Proposed Information Collection Request Submitted for Public Comment and Recommendations; Ground Control Plan

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The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent burden conducts a pre-clearance consultation program to provide the general public and Federal agencies with an opportunity to comment on proposed and/or continuing collections of information in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA95) [44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)]. This program helps to ensure that requested data can be provided in the desired format, reporting burden (time and financial resources) is minimized, collection instruments are clearly understood, and the impact of collection requirements on respondents can be properly assessed.


Submit comments on or before July 5, 2006.


Send comments to U.S. Department of Labor, Mine Safety and Health Administration, John Rowlett, Director, Management Services Division, 1100 Wilson Boulevard, Room 2134, Arlington, VA 22209-3939. Commenters are encouraged to send their comments on a computer disk, or via Internet e-mail to, along with an original printed copy. Mr. Rowlett can be reached at (202) 693-9827 (voice), or (202) 693-9801 (facsimile).

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Contact the employee listed in the ADDRESSES” section of this notice.

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I. Background

Each operator of a surface coal mine is required under 30 CFR 77.1000 to establish and follow a ground control plan that is consistent with prudent engineering design and which will ensure safe working conditions. The plans are based on the type of strata expected to be encountered, the height and angle of highwalls and spoil banks, and the equipment to be used at the mine. Ground control plans are required by 30 CFR 77.1000-1 to be filed with the MSHA district Manager in the district in which the mine is located. The plans are reviewed by MSHA to ensure that highwalls, pits, and spoil banks are maintained in safe condition Start Printed Page 26569through the use of sound engineering design.

II. Desired Focus of Comments

MSHA 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., permitting electronic submissions of responses.

A copy of the proposed information collection request can be obtained by contacting the employee listed in the For Further Information Contact section of this notice, or viewed on the Internet by accessing the MSHA home page ( and then choosing “Statutory and Regulatory Information” and “Federal Register Documents.”

III. Current Actions

MSHA is seeking to continue the requirement for mine operators to submit ground control plans to ensure that highwalls, pits, and spoil banks are maintained in safe condition so that a safe working environment is provided for miners.

Type of Review: Extension.

Agency: Mine Safety and Health Administration.

Title: Ground Control Plan.

OMB Number: 1219-0026.

Recordkeeping: § 77.1000-1 states that the operator shall file a copy of the ground control plan and revisions with the Coal Mine Health and Safety District or Subdistrict office for the District or Subdistrict in which the mine is located and shall identify the name and location of the mine; the Mine Safety and Health Administration identification number if known; and the name and address of the mine operator.

Frequency: On occasion

Affected Public: Business or other for-profit.

Respondents: 925.

Reponses: 313.

Total Burden Hours: 2,721 hours.

Total Burden Cost (operating/maintaining): $0.

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

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Dated at Arlington, Virginia, this 27th day of April, 2006.

David L. Meyer,

Director, Office of Administration and Management.

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[FR Doc. E6-6857 Filed 5-4-06; 8:45 am]