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Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement; Fire-Resistant Fiber for Production of Military Uniforms (DFARS Case 2011-D021)

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Defense Acquisition Regulations System, Department of Defense (DoD).

ACTION:

Interim rule with request for comments.

SUMMARY:

DoD is issuing an interim rule to implement section 821 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011. Section 821 prohibits specification of the use of fire-resistant rayon fiber in solicitations issued before January 1, 2015.

DATES:

Effective date: June 6, 2011.

Comment date: Comments on the interim rule should be submitted in writing to the address shown below on or before August 5, 2011.

ADDRESSES:

Submit comments identified by DFARS Case 2011-D021, using any of the following methods:

Regulations.gov: http://www.regulations.gov.

Submit comments via the Federal eRulemaking portal by inputting “DFARS Case 2011-D021” under the heading “Enter keyword or ID” and selecting “Search.” Select the link “Submit a Comment” that corresponds with “DFARS Case 2011-D021.” Follow the instructions provided at the “Submit a Comment” screen. Please include your name, company name (if any), and “DFARS Case 2011-D021” on your attached document.

E-mail: dfars@osd.mil. Include DFARS Case 2011-D021 in the subject line of the message.

Fax: 703-602-0350.

Mail: Defense Acquisition Regulations System, Attn: Amy G. Williams, OUSD (AT&L) DPAP/DARS, Room 3B855, 3060 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-3060.

Comments received generally will be posted without change to http://www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided. To confirm receipt of your comment(s), please check http://www.regulations.gov approximately two to three days after submission to verify posting (except allow 30 days for posting of comments submitted by mail).

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

This interim rule amends DFARS subpart 225.70 to implement section 821 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 (Pub. L. 111-383). Section 821 prohibits specification of the use of fire-resistant rayon fiber in solicitations issued before January 1, 2015.

II. Executive Orders 12866 and 13563

Executive Orders (E.O.s) 12866 and 13563 direct agencies to assess all costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). E.O. 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This is not a significant regulatory action and, therefore, was not subject to review under Section 6(b) of E.O. 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, dated September 30, 1993. This rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.

III. Regulatory Flexibility Act

DoD does not expect this interim rule to have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities within the meaning of the Regulatory Flexibility Act, 5 U.S.C. 601, et seq. Start Printed Page 32844However, an initial regulatory flexibility analysis has been prepared and is summarized as follows:

The objectives of this interim rule are to prohibit specification of the use of fire-resistant rayon fiber in solicitations issued before January 1, 2015, as required by the statute. This will provide opportunity for offerors to propose alternative solutions to meet DoD requirements.

The legal basis for this interim rule is section 821 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011 (Pub. L. 111-383).

The two major sources of fire-resistant fiber used in DoD products either come from DuPont (product called Nomex) or The Lenzing Group, Austria (product called Fire-Resistant Rayon). In order to manufacture a fire-resistant uniform currently being sourced by the services, three products are blended together to meet desired cost, availability, and performance criteria:

  • Nylon;
  • Para-aramid (Kevlar by DuPont or Twaron by Teijin (the Netherlands)); and
  • Either Nomex (DuPont) or Fire-Resistant Rayon (Lenzing).

DuPont is a domestic large business and the other players are foreign. Therefore, this rule will have minimal impact on U.S. small businesses.

This rule does not impose any reporting or recordkeeping requirements.

The rule does not duplicate, overlap, or conflict with any other Federal rules.

There are no significant alternatives to accomplish the stated objectives of this rule. The rule specifically implements the statutory requirement.

DoD invites comments from small business concerns and other interested parties on the expected impact of this rule on small entities.

DoD will also consider comments from small entities concerning the existing regulations in subparts affected by this rule in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 610. Interested parties must submit such comments separately and should cite 5 U.S.C. 610 (DFARS Case 2011-D021) in correspondence.

V. Paperwork Reduction Act

The rule does not contain any information collection requirements that require the approval of the Office of Management and Budget under the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. chapter 35).

VI. Determination To Issue an Interim Rule

A determination has been made under the authority of the Secretary of Defense, that urgent and compelling reasons exist to publish an interim rule prior to affording the public an opportunity to comment. This interim rule implements section 821 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011. This requirement became effective upon enactment on January 7, 2011. This action is necessary in order to enable contracting officers to comply with this new requirement. Comments received in response to this interim rule will be considered in the formation of the final rule.

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List of Subjects in 48 CFR Part 225

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Ynette R. Shelkin,

Editor, Defense Acquisition Regulations System.

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Therefore, 48 CFR part 225 is amended as follows:

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PART 225—FOREIGN ACQUISITION

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1. The authority citation for

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Authority: 41 U.S.C. 1303 and 48 CFR chapter 1.

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2. In subpart 225.70, add section 225.7016 to read as follows:

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Prohibition.

In accordance with section 821 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011, do not include in any solicitation issued before January 1, 2015, a requirement that proposals submitted pursuant to such solicitation shall include the use of fire-resistant rayon fiber.

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[FR Doc. 2011-13368 Filed 6-3-11; 8:45 am]

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