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Rule

Oriental Fruit Fly; Removal of Quarantined Areas

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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This document has been published in the Federal Register. Use the PDF linked in the document sidebar for the official electronic format.

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AGENCY:

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Interim rule and request for comments.

SUMMARY:

We are amending the Oriental fruit fly regulations by removing the Santa Ana area of Orange County, CA, from the list of quarantined areas and removing restrictions on the interstate movement of regulated articles from that area. This action is necessary to relieve restrictions that are no longer needed to prevent the spread of the Oriental fruit fly into noninfested areas of the United States. We have determined that the Oriental fruit fly has been eradicated from this portion of Orange County, CA, and that the quarantine and restrictions are no longer necessary. The Santa Ana area of Orange County, CA, was the last remaining area in California quarantined for Oriental fruit fly. Therefore, as a result of this action, there are no longer any areas in the continental United States quarantined for the Oriental fruit fly.

DATES:

This interim rule is effective July 23, 2007. We will consider all comments that we receive on or before September 21, 2007.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

Federal eRulemaking Portal: Go to http://www.regulations.gov, select “Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service” from the agency drop-down menu, then click “Submit.” In the Docket ID column, select APHIS-2006-0151 to submit or view public comments and to view supporting and related materials available electronically. Information on using Regulations.gov, including instructions for accessing documents, submitting comments, and viewing the docket after the close of the comment period, is available through the site's “User Tips” link.

Postal Mail/Commercial Delivery: Please send four copies of your comment (an original and three copies) to Docket No. APHIS-2006-0151, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state that your comment refers to Docket No. APHIS-2006-0151.

Reading Room: You may read any comments that we receive on this docket in our reading room. The reading room is located in room 1141 of the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue SW., Washington, DC. Normal reading room hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. To be sure someone is there to help you, please call (202) 690-2817 before coming.

Other Information: Additional information about APHIS and its programs is available on the Internet at http://www.aphis.usda.gov.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Mr. Wayne D. Burnett, Domestic Coordinator, Fruit Fly Exclusion and Detection Programs, APHIS, 4700 River Road Unit 137, Riverdale, MD 20737-1234; (301) 734-6553.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

The Oriental fruit fly, Bactrocera dorsalis (Hendel), is a destructive pest of citrus and other types of fruit, nuts, vegetables, and berries. The short life cycle of the Oriental fruit fly allows rapid development of serious outbreaks, which can cause severe economic losses. Heavy infestations can cause complete loss of crops.

The Oriental fruit fly regulations, contained in 7 CFR 301.93 through 301.93-10 (referred to below as the regulations), restrict the interstate movement of regulated articles from quarantined areas to prevent the spread of the Oriental fruit fly to noninfested areas of the United States. The regulations also designate soil and a large number of fruits, nuts, vegetables, and berries as regulated articles.

In an interim rule published in the Federal Register on January 22, 2007 (72 FR 2597-2599, Docket No. APHIS-2006-0151), we amended the regulations by adding the Santa Ana area of Orange County, CA, to the list of quarantined areas and restricted the interstate movement of regulated articles from that area.

Based on trapping surveys conducted by inspectors of California State and county agencies, we have determined that the Oriental fruit fly has been eradicated from the quarantined portion of Orange County. The last finding of Oriental fruit fly in this quarantined area was December 5, 2006.

Since then, no evidence of Oriental fruit fly infestation has been found in this area. Based on our experience, we have determined that sufficient time has passed without finding additional flies or other evidence of infestation to conclude that the Oriental fruit fly no longer exists in Orange County, CA. Therefore, we are removing the entry for the Santa Ana area of Orange County, CA, from the list of quarantined areas in § 301.93-3(c). With the removal of the Santa Ana area of Orange County from that list, there are no longer any areas in the continental United States quarantined for the Oriental fruit fly.

Immediate Action

Immediate action is warranted to relieve restrictions that are no longer necessary. A portion of Orange County, CA, was quarantined due to the possibility that the Oriental fruit fly could spread from this area to noninfested areas of the United States. Since we have concluded that the Oriental fruit fly no longer exists in this county, immediate action is warranted to remove the quarantine on Orange County, CA, and to relieve the restrictions on the interstate movement of regulated articles from this area. Under these circumstances, the Administrator has determined that prior notice and opportunity for public comment are contrary to the public interest and that there is good cause under 5 U.S.C. 553 for making this action effective less than 30 days after publication in the Federal Register. Start Printed Page 40062

Executive Order 12866 and Regulatory Flexibility Act

This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12866. For this action, the Office of Management and Budget has waived its review under Executive Order 12866.

This rule amends the Oriental fruit fly regulations by removing the Santa Ana area of Orange County, CA, from the list of quarantined areas. This action also removes restrictions on the interstate movement of regulated articles from that area.

County records indicate that there are 11 farmers markets, 15 fruit sellers, 4 growers, 2 nurseries, 14 swapmeets, 1 mobile vendor, and 1 yard maintenance company within the area that has been quarantined. We expect that the effect of this interim rule on those businesses, all of which are small entities, will be minimal. Small entities located within the quarantined area that sell regulated articles do so primarily for local intrastate, not interstate, movement, so the effect, if any, of this rule on these entities appears likely to be minimal. In addition, the effect on any small entities that may move regulated articles interstate has been minimized during the quarantine period by the availability of various treatments that allow these small entities, in most cases, to move regulated articles interstate with very little additional cost. Thus, just as the previous interim rule establishing the quarantined area in Orange County, CA, had little effect on the small entities in the area, the lifting of the quarantine in this interim rule will also have little effect.

Under these circumstances, the Administrator of the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service has determined that this action will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities.

Executive Order 12372

This program/activity is listed in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance under No. 10.025 and is subject to Executive Order 12372, which requires intergovernmental consultation with State and local officials. (See 7 CFR part 3015, subpart V.)

Executive Order 12988

This rule has been reviewed under Executive Order 12988, Civil Justice Reform. This rule: (1) Preempts all State and local laws and regulations that are inconsistent with this rule; (2) has no retroactive effect; and (3) does not require administrative proceedings before parties may file suit in court challenging this rule.

Paperwork Reduction Act

This rule contains no information collection or recordkeeping requirements under the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.).

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List of Subjects in 7 CFR Part 301

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Accordingly,

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PART 301—DOMESTIC QUARANTINE NOTICES

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1. The authority citation for part 301 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 7 U.S.C. 7701-7772 and 7781-7786; 7 CFR 2.22, 2.80, and 371.3.

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Section 301.75-15 issued under Sec. 204, Title II, Public Law 106-113, 113 Stat. 1501A-293; sections 301.75-15 and 301.75-16 issued under Sec. 203, Title II, Public Law 106-224, 114 Stat. 400 (7 U.S.C. 1421 note).

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2. In § 301.93-3, paragraph (c) is revised to read as follows:

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Quarantined areas.
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(c) The areas described below are designated as quarantined areas: There are no areas in the continental United States quarantined for the Oriental fruit fly.

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Done in Washington, DC, this 18th day of July 2007.

Kevin Shea,

Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

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[FR Doc. E7-14163 Filed 7-20-07; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-34-P