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Proposed Revision 0 to Fitness-for-Duty Standard Review Plan

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AGENCY:

Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION:

Notice of availability and request for comment.

SUMMARY:

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is soliciting public comment on draft NUREG-0800, “Standard Review Plan for the Review of Safety Analysis Reports for Nuclear Power Plants,” LWR Edition: Section 13.7 “Fitness-for-Duty,” and Section 13.7.1 “Fitness-for-Duty—Operational Start Printed Page 42559Program.” The NRC seeks comments on the proposed new sections of the Standard Review Plan (SRP), concerning implementation of a Fitness-for-Duty (FFD) program. The current SRP does not contain guidance on the review of an applicant's proposed FFD program.

DATES:

Comments must be filed no later than August 15, 2013. Comments received after this date will be considered, if it is practical to do so, but the Commission is able to ensure consideration only for comments received on or before this date.

ADDRESSES:

You may access information and comment submissions related to this document, which the NRC possesses and are publically available, by searching on http://www.regulations.gov under Docket ID NRC-2013-0149. You may submit comments by any of the following methods:

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2013-0149. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-492-3668; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov.
  • Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Chief, Rules, Announcements, and Directives Branch (RADB), Office of Administration, Mail Stop: 3WFN 6-A56, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.

For additional direction on accessing information and submitting comments, see “Accessing Information and Submitting Comments” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Wesley Held, Office of New Reactors, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-1583 or email: Wesley.Held@nrc.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Accessing Information and Submitting Comments

A. Accessing Information

Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2013-0149 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You may access information related to this document, which the NRC possesses and are publicly available, by any of the following methods:

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2013-0149.
  • NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS): You may access publicly available documents online in the NRC Library at http://www.nrc.gov/​reading-rm/​adams.html. To begin the search, select “ADAMS Public Documents” and then select “Begin Web-based ADAMS Search.” For problems with ADAMS, please contact the NRC's Public Document Room (PDR) reference staff at 1-800-397-4209, 301-415-4737, or by email to pdr.resource@nrc.gov. The ADAMS Accession numbers for the proposed new sections of the SRP are available in ADAMS under Accession Nos.: ML113250516 (Section 13.7, “Fitness for Duty—Introduction”), and ML113250541 (Section 13.7.1, “Fitness for Duty—Operational Program”).
  • NRC's PDR: You may examine and purchase copies of public documents at the NRC's PDR, Room O1-F21, One White Flint North, 11555 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland 20852.

B. Submitting Comments

Please include Docket ID NRC-2013-0149 in the subject line of your comment submission, in order to ensure that the NRC is able to make your comment submission available to the public in this docket.

The NRC cautions you not to include identifying or contact information in comment submissions that you do not want to be publicly disclosed. The NRC posts all comment submissions at http://www.regulations.gov as well as enters the comment submissions into ADAMS. The NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove identifying or contact information.

If you are requesting or aggregating comments from other persons for submission to the NRC, then you should inform those persons not to include identifying or contact information in their comment submissions that they do not want to be publicly disclosed. Your request should state that the NRC does not routinely edit comment submissions to remove such information before making the comment submissions available to the public or entering the comment submissions into ADAMS.

II. Further Information

The NRC seeks public comment on the proposed new sections of the SRP. These sections have been developed to assist NRC staff with the review of applications for certain construction permits, early site permits, licenses, license amendments, and combined licenses and to inform new reactor applicants and other affected entities of proposed SRP guidance regarding an acceptable method by which to evaluate a proposed Fitness-for-Duty program for compliance with part 26 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulation s (10 CFR).

Following NRC staff evaluation of public comments, the NRC intends to incorporate the final approved guidance into the next revision of NUREG-0800. The SRP is guidance for the NRC staff. The SRP is not a substitute for the NRC regulations, and compliance with the SRP is not required.

Backfitting and Issue Finality

Issuance of this draft SRP, if finalized, would not constitute backfitting as defined in section 50.109 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) (the Backfit Rule) or otherwise be inconsistent with the issue finality provisions in part 50 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR). The NRC's position is based upon the following considerations.

1. The draft SRP positions, if finalized, would not constitute backfitting, inasmuch as the SRP is internal guidance to NRC staff.

The SRP provides internal guidance to the NRC staff on how to review an application for NRC regulatory approval in the form of licensing. Changes in internal staff guidance are not matters for which either nuclear power plant applicants or licensees are protected under either the Backfit Rule or the issue finality provisions of 10 CFR part 52.

2. The NRC staff has no intention to impose the SRP positions on existing licensees either now or in the future.

The NRC staff does not intend to impose or apply the positions described in the draft SRP to existing licenses and regulatory approvals. Hence, the issuance of a final SRP—even if considered guidance within the purview of the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52— would not need to be evaluated as if it were a backfit or as being inconsistent with issue finality provisions. If, in the future, the NRC staff seeks to impose a position in the SRP on holders of already issued licenses in a manner that does not provide issue finality as described in the applicable issue finality provision, then the staff must make the showing as set forth in the Backfit Rule or address the criteria for avoiding issue finality as described in the applicable issue finality provision.

3. #Backfitting and issue finality do not—with limited exceptions not applicable here—protect current or future applicants.

Applicants and potential applicants are not, with certain exceptions, protected by either the Backfit Rule or any issue finality provisions under 10 CFR part 52. Neither the Backfit Rule nor the issue finality provisions under 10 CFR part 52—with certain Start Printed Page 42560exclusions—were intended to apply to every NRC action that substantially changes the expectations of current and future applicants. The exceptions to the general principle are applicable whenever an applicant references a 10 CFR part 52 license (e.g., an early site permit) and/or NRC regulatory approval (e.g., a design certification rule) with specified issue finality provisions. The NRC staff does not, at this time, intend to impose the positions represented in the draft SRP in a manner that is inconsistent with any issue finality provisions. If, in the future, the staff seeks to impose a position in the draft SRP in a manner that does not provide issue finality as described in the applicable issue finality provision, then the staff must address the criteria for avoiding issue finality as described in the applicable issue finality provision.

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Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 27th day of June 2013.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Joseph Colaccino,

Chief, Policy Branch, Division of Advanced Reactors and Rulemaking, Office of New Reactors.

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[FR Doc. 2013-16985 Filed 7-15-13; 8:45 am]

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