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Proposed Extension of Information Collection; Comment Request; Prohibited Transaction Exemption 97-41, Collective Investment Funds Conversion Transactions

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Employee Benefits Security Administration, Department of Labor.




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 (in both time and financial resources) on the public and that the public can clearly understand the Department's information 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 provisions of Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 97-41, Collective Investment Funds Conversion Transactions. A copy of the Information Collection Request (ICR) may be obtained by contacting the office listed in the Addresses section of this notice.


Written comments must be submitted to the office shown in the ADDRESSES section below on or before June 19, 2009.


Direct all written comments to G. Christopher Cosby 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, (202) 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:

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I. Background

Prohibited Transaction Exemption (PTE) 97-41 provides an exemption from the prohibited transaction provisions of the Employment Start Printed Page 17987Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and from certain taxes imposed by the Internal Revenue Code of 1986. The exemption permits employee benefit plans to purchase shares of one or more open-end investment companies (funds) registered under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 by transferring in-kind, to the investment company, assets of the plan that are part of a collective investment fund (CIF) maintained by a bank or plan advisor that is both a fiduciary of the plan and an investment advisor to the investment company offering the fund.

The exemption requires that an independent fiduciary receive advance written notice of any covered transaction, as well as specific written information concerning the mutual funds to be purchased. The independent fiduciary must also provide written advance approval of conversion transactions and receive written confirmation of each transaction, as well as additional on-going disclosures as defined in PTE 97-41. These disclosures are the basis for this ICR.

EBSA previously submitted the information collection provisions of PTE 2002-12 to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review in connection with promulgation of the prohibited transaction exemption. OMB approved the information collection request (ICR) under OMB Control No. 1210-0115. The ICR approval is currently scheduled to expire on June 30, 2009.

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., permitting electronic submission of responses.

III. Current Action

This notice requests comments on the extension of the ICR included in PTE 97-41. 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.

Titles: Prohibited Transaction Class Exemption 97-41, Collective Investment Funds Conversion Transactions.

OMB Number: 1210-0104.

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

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 1,756.

Respondents: 105.

Frequency of Response: On occasion.

Responses: 105.

Total Burden Cost (Operating and Maintenance): $282,000.

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

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Dated: April 13, 2009.

Joseph S. Piacentini,

Director, Office of Policy and Research, Employee Benefits Security Administration.

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[FR Doc. E9-8908 Filed 4-17-09; 8:45 am]