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Agency Forms Submitted for OMB Review, Request for Comments

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Summary: In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) is forwarding an Information Collection Request (ICR) to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to request an extension of a currently approved collection of information: 3220-0154, Employee Non-Covered Service Pension Questionnaire. Our ICR describes the information we seek to collect from the public. Review and approval by OIRA ensures that we impose appropriate paperwork burdens.

The RRB invites comments on the proposed collection of information to determine: (1) The practical utility of the collection; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden of the collection; (3) ways to enhance the quality, utility and clarity of the information that is the subject of collection; and (4) ways to minimize the burden of collections on respondents, including the use of automated collection techniques or other forms of information technology. Comments to RRB or OIRA must contain the OMB control number of the ICR. For proper consideration of your comments, it is best if RRB and OIRA receive them within 30 days of publication date.

Section 215(a)(7) of the Social Security Act provides for a reduction in social security benefits based on employment not covered under the Social Security Act or the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA). This provision applies a different social security benefit formula to most workers who are first eligible after 1985 to both a pension based in whole or in part on non-covered employment and a social security retirement or disability benefit. There is a guarantee provision that limits the reduction in the social security benefit to one-half of the portion of the pension based on non-covered employment after 1956. Section 8011 of Public Law 100-647 changed the effective date of the onset from the first month of eligibility to the first month of concurrent entitlement to the non-covered service benefit and the RRA benefit.

Section 3(a)(1) of the RRA provides that the Tier I benefit of an employee annuity will be equal to the amount (before any reduction for age or deduction for work) the employee would receive if he or she would have been entitled to a like benefit under the Social Security Act. The reduction for a non-covered service pension also applies to a Tier I portion of employees under the RRA where the annuity or non-covered service pension begins after 1985. Since the amount of a spouse's Tier I benefit is one-half of the employee's Tier I, the spouse annuity is also affected by the employee's non-covered service pension reduction of his or her Tier I benefit.

The RRB utilizes Form G-209, Employee Non-Covered Service Pension Questionnaire, to obtain needed information from railroad retirement employee applicants or annuitants about the receipt of a pension based on employment not covered under the Railroad Retirement Act or the Social Security Act. It is used as both a supplement to the employee annuity application, and as an independent questionnaire to be completed when an individual who is already receiving an employee annuity, becomes entitled to a pension. One response is requested of each respondent. Completion is required to obtain or retain benefits.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (73 FR 12475 on March 7, 2008) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Employee Non-Covered Service Pension Questionnaire.

OMB Control Number: OMB 3220-0154.

Form(s) submitted: G-209.

Type of request: Revision of a currently approved collection.

Affected public: Individuals or Households.

Abstract: Under Section 3 of the Railroad Retirement Act, the Tier I portion of an employee annuity may be subjected to a reduction for benefits received based on work not covered under the Social Security Act or Railroad Retirement Act. The questionnaire obtains the information needed to determine if the reduction applies and the amount of such reduction.

Changes Proposed: The RRB proposes minor, non-burden impacting, clarification and editorial changes to G-209.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Estimated Completion Time for Form(s): Completion time for Form G-209 is estimated at 1 minute for a partial questionnaire and 8 minutes for a full questionnaire.

Estimated annual number of respondents: 150.

Total annual responses: 150.

Total annual reporting hours: 14.

Additional Information or Comments: Copies of the form and supporting documents can be obtained from Charles Mierzwa, the agency clearance officer at (312-751-3363) or Charles.Mierzwa@rrb.gov.

Comments regarding the information collection should be addressed to Ronald J. Hodapp, Railroad Retirement Board, 844 North Rush Street, Chicago, Illinois 60611-2092 or Ronald.Hodapp@rrb.gov and to the OMB Desk Officer for the RRB, at the Office of Management and Budget, Room 10230, New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC 20503.

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Charles Mierzwa,

Clearance Officer.

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[FR Doc. E8-13395 Filed 6-13-08; 8:45 am]

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