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Proposed Information Collection Request; Comment Request; Performance Evaluation Studies on Wastewater Laboratories (Renewal); EPA ICR No. 0234.11, OMB Control No. 2080-0021

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Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).




The Environmental Protection Agency is planning to submit an information collection request (ICR), “Performance Evaluation Studies on Wastewater Laboratories” (EPA ICR No. 0234.11, OMB Control No. 2080-0021) to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review and approval in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.). Before doing so, EPA is soliciting public comments on specific aspects of the proposed information collection as described below. This is a proposed extension of the ICR, which is currently approved through January 31, 2014. An Agency may not conduct or sponsor and a person is not required to respond to a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.


Comments must be submitted on or before September 10, 2013.


Submit your comments, referencing Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OECA-2013-0413, online using (our preferred method), by email to Start Printed Page 41927 or by mail to: EPA Docket Center, Environmental Protection Agency, Mail Code 28221T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460.

EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes profanity, threats, information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute.

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Brian Krausz, Monitoring, Assistance, and Media Programs Division, Office of Compliance, (2227A), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (202) 564-3069; fax number: (202) 564-0038; email address:

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Supporting documents which explain in detail the information that the EPA will be collecting are available in the public docket for this ICR. The docket can be viewed online at or in person at the EPA Docket Center, EPA West, Room 3334, 1301 Constitution Avenue NW., Washington, DC The telephone number for the Docket Center is (202) 566-1744. For additional information about EPA's public docket, visit​dockets.

Pursuant to section 3506(c)(2)(A) of the PRA, EPA is soliciting comments and information to enable it to: (i) 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; (ii) 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; (iii) enhance the quality, utility, and clarity of the information to be collected; and (iv) 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. EPA will consider the comments received and amend the ICR as appropriate. The final ICR package will then be submitted to OMB for review and approval. At that time, EPA will issue another Federal Register notice to announce the submission of the ICR to OMB and the opportunity to submit additional comments to OMB.

Abstract: Discharge Monitoring Report-Quality Assurance (DMR-QA) study program participation is mandatory for major and selected minor National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit holders in accordance with Clean Water Act Section 308. The DMR-QA study program is designed to evaluate the analytic ability of the laboratories that perform chemical, microbiological and whole effluent toxicity (WET) analyses required in the NPDES permits for reporting results in the Discharge Monitoring Reports (DMR). Under DMR-QA, the permit holder is responsible: for having their in-house and/or contract laboratories perform proficiency test samples and submit results for grading by proficiency testing (PT) providers. Graded results are transmitted by either the permittee or PT provider to the appropriate federal or state NPDES regulatory authority. Permit holders are responsible for submitting corrective action reports to the appropriate regulatory authority.

Form Numbers: EPA Form 6400-01.

Respondents/Affected Entities: Major and selected minor permit holders under the Clean Water Act's National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES).

Respondent's Obligation to Respond: Mandatory under Clean Water Act Section 308(a)

Estimated Number of Respondents: 5,509 (total).

Frequency of Response: Major permit holders must participate annually. Minor permit holders must participate if selected by the state or EPA DMR-QA coordinator.

Total Estimated Burden: 36,361 hours (per year). Burden is defined at 5 CFR 1320.3(b).

Total Estimated Cost: $4,176,263 (per year), includes $2,376,638 annualized capital or operation & maintenance costs.

Changes in Estimates: There is a decrease of 5,150 hours in the total estimated respondent burden compared with the ICR currently approved by OMB. This decrease in burden hours can be attributed to a number of states obtaining full or partial waivers from this activity through agreements with the EPA. Labor costs were revised upward to take into account employee benefit compensation costs and inflation. Non-labor costs for obtaining proficiency test samples increased because of an update to the list of most commonly used analytes coupled with inflation.

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Dated: June 26, 2013.

Lisa C. Lund,

Director, Office of Compliance.

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[FR Doc. 2013-16767 Filed 7-11-13; 8:45 am]