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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 three Information Collection Requests (ICR) to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), Office of Management and Budget (OMB). 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 collections of information to determine (1) the practical utility of the collections; (2) the accuracy of the estimated burden of the collections; (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 the RRB or OIRA must contain the OMB control number of the ICR. For proper consideration of your comments, it is best if the RRB and OIRA receive them within 30 days of the publication date.

1. Title and Purpose of information collection: Application for Reimbursement for Hospital Insurance Services in Canada; OMB 3220-0086.

Under section 7(d) of the Railroad Retirement Act (RRA), the RRB administers the Medicare program for persons covered by the railroad retirement system. Payments are provided under section 7(d)(4) of the RRA for medical services furnished in Canada to the same extent as for those furnished in the United States. However, payments for the services furnished in Canada are made from the Railroad Retirement Account rather than from the Federal Hospital Insurance Trust Fund, with the payments limited to the amount by which insurance benefits under Medicare exceed the amount payable under Canadian Provincial plans.

Form AA-104, Application for Canadian Hospital Benefits Under Medicare—Part A, is provided by the RRB to a claimant seeking reimbursement for covered hospital services received in Canada. The form obtains information needed to determine the eligibility of the applicant and the amount of any reimbursement due. One response is requested of each respondent. Completion is required to obtain a benefit.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (76 FR 29282 on May 20, 2011) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Application for Reimbursement for Hospital Insurance Services in Canada

OMB Control Number: 3220-0086

Form(s) submitted: AA-104

Type of request: Revision of a currently approved collection

Affected public: Individuals or Households

Abstract: The Railroad Retirement Board administers the Medicare program for persons covered by the railroad retirement system. The collection obtains the information needed to determine eligibility and for the amount due for covered hospital services received in Canada.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes non-burden impacting formatting and editorial changes to Form AA-104.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Estimated Completion Time for Form AA-104: 10 minutes

Estimated annual number of respondents: 35

Total annual responses: 35

Total annual reporting hours: 6

2. Title and Purpose of information collection: Employee Non-Covered Service Pension Questionnaire; OMB 3220-0154.

Section 215(a)(7) of the Social Security Act provides for a reduction in social security benefits based on Start Printed Page 52027employment 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 shall be equal to the amount (before any reduction for age or deduction for work) the employee would receive if 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 the employee annuity under the RRA when 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.

Form G-209, Employee Non-Covered Service Pension Questionnaire, is used by the RRB to obtain needed information (1) from a railroad employee who while completing Form AA-1, Application for Employee Annuity (OMB No. 3220-0002), indicates entitlement to or receipt of a pension based on employment not covered under Railroad Retirement or Social Security; (2) from a railroad employee when an independently-entitled divorced spouse applicant believes the employee to be entitled to a non-covered service pension. However, should RRB records indicate the employee has 30 or more years of coverage, this development is unnecessary; or (3) from an employee annuitant who becomes entitled to a pension based on employment not covered under Railroad Retirement or Social Security. 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 (76 FR 29283 on May 20, 2011) 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: 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 subject 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 editorial changes to Form G-209.

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Estimated Completion Time for Form G-209: 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

3. Title and Purpose of information collection: Availability for Work; OMB 3220-0164. Under section 1(k) of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, unemployment benefits are not payable for any day for which the claimant is not available for work.

Under Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) regulation 20 CFR 327.5, “available for work” is defined as being willing and ready for work. A claimant is “willing” to work if willing to accept and perform for hire such work as is reasonably appropriate to his or her employment circumstances. A claimant is “ready” for work if he or she (1) is in a position to receive notice of work and is willing to accept and perform such work, and (2) is prepared to be present with the customary equipment at the location of such work within the time usually allotted.

Under RRB regulation 20 CFR 327.15, a claimant may be requested at any time to show, as evidence of willingness to work, that reasonable efforts are being made to obtain work. In order to determine whether a claimant is; (a) available for work, and (b) willing to work, the RRB utilizes Forms UI-38 and UI-38s to obtain information from the claimant and Form ID-8k from the union representative. One response is completed by each respondent. Completion of Forms UI-38 and UI-38s is required to obtain or retain benefits. Completion of Form ID-8k is voluntary.

Previous Requests for Comments: The RRB has already published the initial 60-day notice (76 FR 29283 on May 20, 2011) required by 44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2). That request elicited no comments.

Information Collection Request (ICR)

Title: Availability for Work

OMB Control Number: 3220-0164

Form(s) submitted: UI-38, UI-38s, ID-8k

Type of request: Revision of a currently approved collection

Affected public: Individuals or Households, Non-profit institutions

Abstract: Under Section 1(k) of the Railroad Unemployment Insurance Act, unemployment benefits are not payable for any day in which the claimant is not available for work. The collection obtains information needed by the RRB to determine whether a claimant is willing and ready to work.

Changes proposed: The RRB proposes to revise Form ID-8k to eliminate question two regarding “pay for time lost.” This question was previously included to remind covered employers of their reporting obligations under section 2(f) of the RUIA. The question is being removed as it was determined that other forms, such as the ID-4e and ID-4k, provide sufficient notice of covered employer's reporting obligations under section 2(f).

The burden estimate for the ICR is as follows:

Estimated Completion Time for Forms: UI-38 is estimated at 11.5 minutes per response; UI-38s is estimated at 6 minutes per response in person and 10 minutes per response by mail; and Form ID-8k is estimated at 5 minutes per response.

Estimated annual number of respondents: 7,428

Total annual responses: 7,428

Total annual reporting hours: 966

Additional Information or Comments: Copies of the forms 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 Patricia Henaghan, Railroad Retirement Board, 844 North Rush Street, Chicago, Illinois, 60611-2092 or Patricia.Henaghan@RRB.GOV and to the OMB Desk Officer for the RRB, Fax: 202-395-6974, E-mail address: OIRA_Submission@omb.eop.gov.

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Charles Mierzwa,

Clearance Officer.

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[FR Doc. 2011-21222 Filed 8-18-11; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 7905-01-P