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Rule

Exchange Visitor Program-Au Pairs

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Department of State.

ACTION:

Interim Final Rule with request for comment.

SUMMARY:

The Department is hereby revising its regulations regarding Au Pairs. The Interim Final Rule revises the section on repeat participation to allow qualified au pairs to repeat the program after a period of at least two years residency outside the United States following the end date of his or her initial program.

DATES:

This rule is effective 30 days from July 21, 2008. The Department will accept comments from the public up to 30 days from July 21, 2008.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by any of the following methods:

  • Persons with access to the Internet may view this notice and provide comments by going to the regulations.gov Web site at: http://www.regulations.gov/​index.cfm.
  • E-mail: jexchanges@state.gov. You must include the RIN (1400-AC48) in the subject line of your message.
  • Mail (paper, disk, or CD-ROM submissions): U.S. Department of State, Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, SA-44, 301 4th Street, SW., Room 734, Washington, DC 20547.
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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Stanley S. Colvin, Director, Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, U.S. Department of State, SA-44, 301 4th Street, SW., Room 734, Washington, DC 20547; or e-mail at jexchanges@state.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

On December 10, 2007, the Department of State published a Notice with request for comments to solicit views on the age eligibility requirement for au pair participants, an increase of the age limitation from 26 to 30, and whether to allow a foreign national who previously participated in the au pair program to repeat the program. A total of seven comments were received in response to the Notice. All seven comments were in favor of increasing the age requirement and permitting repeat participation. The au pair program is one of five work-based exchange opportunities available through the Exchange Visitor Program. These programs are targeted toward young adults aged 18-26. At this time, the Department believes the synergies of the program are enhanced by retaining its focus on participants in this age range.

On the other hand, as the result of repeat participation, au pair sponsors will be able to select from a larger pool of candidates. The Department has determined that an au pair who has successfully completed the au pair program may repeat program participation provided that he or she has resided outside the United States for a period of at least two years after the completion of initial participation in the au pair program (including the educational component requirement) and is within the regulatory age range for eligibility. An au pair who has previously participated is likely to be more familiar with the American culture (thereby quickly overcoming cultural challenges), is a proven successful caretaker, and will be able to build on the skills previously acquired.

Regulatory Analysis

Administrative Procedure Act

The Department has determined that this Final Rule involves a foreign affairs function of the United States and is consequently exempt from the procedures required by 5 U.S.C. 553 pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(1). Nonetheless, because of its importance to the public, the Department elected to solicit comments during a 60-day comment period.

Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996

This rule has been found not to be a major rule within the meaning of the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996.Start Printed Page 34862

Regulatory Flexibility Act/Executive Order 13272: Small Business

Since this rulemaking is exempt from 5 U.S.C. 553, and no other law requires the Department to give notice of proposed rulemaking, this rulemaking also is not subject to the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601, et seq.) and Executive Order 13272, section 3(b).

Executive Order 12866, as Amended

The Department of State does not consider this Final Rule to be a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866, as amended, § 3(f), Regulatory Planning and Review. In addition, the Department is exempt from Executive Order 12866 except to the extent that it is promulgating regulations in conjunction with a domestic agency that are significant regulatory actions. The Department has nevertheless reviewed the Proposed Rule to ensure its consistency with the regulatory philosophy and principles set forth in that Executive Order.

Executive Order 12988

The Department has reviewed this Final Rule in light of §§ 3(a) and 3(b)(2) of Executive Order 12988 to eliminate ambiguity, minimize litigation, establish clear legal standards, and reduce burden.

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995

The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995, 2 U.S.C. 1532, generally requires agencies to prepare a statement before proposing any rule that may result in an annual expenditure of $100 million or more by State, local, or tribal governments, or by the private sector. This Final Rule will not result in any such expenditure, nor will it significantly or uniquely affect small governments.

Executive Orders 12372 and 13132

This Final 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. Therefore, in accordance with section 6 of Executive Order 13132, it is determined that this rule does not have sufficient federalism implications to require consultations or warrant the preparation of a federalism summary impact statement. The regulations implementing Executive Order 12372 regarding intergovernmental consultation on Federal programs and activities do not apply to this regulation.

Paperwork Reduction Act

This Interim Final Rule does not impose any new reporting or recordkeeping requirements subject to the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. Chapter 35.

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List of Subjects in 22 CFR Part 62

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Accordingly,

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PART 62—EXCHANGE VISITOR PROGRAM

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1. The authority citation for part 62 is revised to read as follows:

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Authority: 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(15)(J), 1182, 1184, 1258; 22 U.S.C. 1431-1442, 2451 et seq.; Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998, Pub. L. 105-277, Div. G, 112 Stat. 2681 et seq.; Reorganization Plan No. 2 of 1977, 3 CFR, 1977 Comp. p. 200; E.O. 12048 of March 27, 1978; 3 CFR, 1978 Comp. p. 168; the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act (IIRIRA) of 1996, Pub. L. 104-208, Div. C, 110 Stat. 3009-546, as amended; Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001 (USA PATRIOT ACT), Pub. L. 107-56, Sec. 416, 115 Stat. 354; and the Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2002, Pub. L. 107-173, 116 Stat. 543.

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2. Section 62.31 is amended by revising paragraph (p) to read as follows:

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Au pairs.
* * * * *

(p) Repeat Participation. A foreign national who enters the United States as an au pair Exchange Visitor Program participant and who has successfully completed his or her program is eligible to participate again as an au pair participant, provided that he or she has resided outside the United States for at least two years following completion of his or her initial au pair program.

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Dated: June 5, 2008.

Stanley S. Colvin,

Director, Office of Exchange Coordination and Designation, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Department of State.

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[FR Doc. E8-13796 Filed 6-18-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4710-05-P