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Notice

Notice of Revision and Request for Extension of Approval of an Information Collection; Importation of Fruits and Vegetables

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AGENCY:

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, USDA.

ACTION:

Revision and extension of approval of an information collection; comment request.

SUMMARY:

In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, this notice announces the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's intention to revise an information collection associated with regulations to allow importation of certain fruits and vegetables into the United States and to request extension of approval of the information collection.

DATES:

We will consider all comments that we receive on or before October 13, 2009.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by either of the following methods:

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:

For information on the importation of fruits and vegetables, contact Ms. Donna L. West, Senior Import Specialist, Regulatory Coordination and Compliance, PPQ, APHIS, 4700 River Road, Unit 133, Riverdale, MD 20737-1231; (301) 734-5298. For copies of more detailed information on the information collection, contact Mrs. Celeste Sickles, APHIS' Information Collection Coordinator, at (301) 851-2908.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Title: Importation of Fruits and Vegetables.

OMB Number: 0579-0316.

Type of Request: Revision and extension of approval of an information collection.

Abstract: As authorized by the Plant Protection Act (PPA, 7 U.S.C. 7701 et seq.), the Secretary of Agriculture may prohibit or restrict the importation, entry, exportation, or movement in interstate commerce of any plant, plant product, biological control organism, noxious weed, means of conveyance, or other article if the Secretary determines that the prohibition or restriction is necessary to prevent a plant pest or noxious weed from being introduced into or disseminated within the United States. This authority has been delegated to the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). APHIS regulations authorized by the PPA concerning the importation of fruits and vegetables are contained in “Subpart—Fruits and Vegetables” (319.56-1 through 319.56-49).

Under these regulations, certain fruits and vegetables may be imported into the United States under specific conditions to prevent the introduction of plant pests into the United States. These conditions involve the use of information collection activities, including the issuance of permits and phytosanitary certificates, trapping surveys, labeling of boxes, and recordkeeping.

We are asking the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to approve our use of these information collection activities for an additional 3 years.

This information collection includes information collection requirements currently approved by OMB control numbers 0579-0293, “Revision of Fruits and Vegetables Import Regulations,” and 0579-0316, “Importation of Fruits and Vegetables.” After OMB approves and combines the burden for both collections under a single collection (0579-0316), the Department will retire number 0579-0293.

The purpose of this notice is to solicit comments from the public (as well as affected agencies) concerning this information collection activity. These comments will help us:Start Printed Page 40161

(1) Evaluate whether the information collection is necessary for the proper performance of our agency's functions, including whether the information will have practical utility;

(2) Evaluate the accuracy of our estimate of the burden of the information collection, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;

(3) Enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and

(4) Minimize the burden of the collection of information on those who are to respond, through use, as appropriate, of automated, electronic, mechanical, and other collection technologies, e.g., permitting electronic submission of responses.

Estimate of burden: The public reporting burden for this collection of information is estimated to average 1.5103216 hours per response.

Respondents: Importers, exporters, and foreign national plant protection organizations.

Estimated annual number of respondents: 2,959.

Estimated annual number of responses per respondent: 27.748901.

Estimated annual number of responses: 82,109.

Estimated total annual burden on respondents: 124,011 hours. (Due to averaging, the total annual burden hours may not equal the product of the annual number of responses multiplied by the reporting burden per response.)

All responses to this notice will be summarized and included in the request for OMB approval. All comments will also become a matter of public record.

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Done in Washington, DC, this 5th day of August 2009.

William H. Clay,

Acting Administrator, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

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[FR Doc. E9-19210 Filed 8-10-09; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 3410-34-P