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Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request

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The Department of Commerce will submit to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for clearance the following proposal for collection of information under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35).

Agency: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

Title: Permits for Incidental Taking of Endangered or Threatened Species.

OMB Control Number: 0648-0230.

Form Number(s): NA.

Type of Request: Regular submission (extension of a current information collection).

Number of Respondents: 13.

Average Hours per Response: Permit applications, 80 hours; annual reports, 8 hours; permit transfers, 40 hours.

Burden Hours: 472.

Needs and Uses: This request is for an extension of a currently approved information collection.

The Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA; 16 U.S.C. 1531 et. seq.) imposed prohibitions against the taking of endangered species. In 1982, Congress revised the ESA to allow permits authorizing the taking of endangered species incidental to otherwise lawful activities. The corresponding regulations (50 CFR 222.222) established procedures for persons to apply for such a permit. In addition, the regulations set forth specific reporting requirements for such permit holders.

The regulations contain three sets of information collections: (l) Applications for incidental take permits, (2) applications for certificates of inclusion, and (3) reporting requirements for permits issued. Certificates of inclusion are only required if a general permit is issued to a representative of a group of potential permit applicants, rather than requiring each entity to apply for and receive a permit.

The required information is used to evaluate the impacts of the proposed activity on endangered species, to make the determinations required by the ESA prior to issuing a permit, and to establish appropriate permit conditions.

When a species is listed as threatened, section 4(d) of the ESA requires the Secretary to issue whatever regulations are deemed necessary or advisable to provide for conservation of the species. In many cases those regulations reflect blanket application of the section 9 take prohibition. However, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) recognizes certain exceptions to that prohibition, including habitat restoration actions taken in accord with approved state watershed action plans. While watershed plans are prepared for other purposes in coordination with or fulfillment of various state programs, a watershed group wishing to take advantage of the exception for restoration activities (rather than obtaining a section 10 permit) would have to submit the plan for NMFS review.

Affected Public: Not-for-profit institutions; state, local or tribal government.

Frequency: Annually and on occasion.

Respondent's Obligation: Required to obtain or retain benefits.

OMB Desk Officer:

Copies of the above information collection proposal can be obtained by calling or writing Jennifer Jessup, Departmental Paperwork Clearance Officer, (202) 482-0336, Department of Commerce, Room 6616, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20230 (or via the Internet at

Written comments and recommendations for the proposed information collection should be sent within 30 days of publication of this notice to

Dated: March 1, 2012.

Gwellnar Banks,

Management Analyst, Office of the Chief Information Officer.

[FR Doc. 2012-5457 Filed 3-6-12; 8:45 am]