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Approval and Promulgation of Air Quality Implementation Plans; Maryland; State Boards Requirements

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Direct final rule.

SUMMARY:

EPA is taking direct final action to approve a revision to the State of Maryland State Implementation Plan (SIP). The SIP revision addresses the State Boards' requirements for all criteria pollutants of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). EPA is approving this SIP revision in accordance with the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA).

DATES:

This rule is effective on February 4, 2014 without further notice, unless EPA receives adverse written comment by January 6, 2014. If EPA receives such comments, it will publish a timely withdrawal of the direct final rule in the Federal Register and inform the public that the rule will not take effect.

ADDRESSES:

Submit your comments, identified by Docket ID Number EPA-R03-OAR-2013-0650 by one of the following methods:

A. www.regulations.gov. Follow the on-line instructions for submitting comments.

B. Email: fernandez.cristina@epa.gov.

C. Mail: EPA-R03-OAR-2013-0650, Cristina Fernandez, Associate Director, Office of Air Program Planning, Air Protection Division, Mailcode 3AP30, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region III, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103.

D. Hand Delivery: At the previously-listed EPA Region III address. Such deliveries are only accepted during the Docket's normal hours of operation, and special arrangements should be made for deliveries of boxed information.

Instructions: Direct your comments to Docket ID No. EPA-R03-OAR-2013-0650. EPA's policy is that all comments received will be included in the public docket without change, and may be made available online at www.regulations.gov, including any personal information provided, unless the comment includes information claimed to be Confidential Business Information (CBI) or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Do not submit information that you consider to be CBI or otherwise protected through www.regulations.gov or email. The www.regulations.gov Web site is an “anonymous access” system, which means EPA will not know your identity or contact information unless you provide it in the body of your comment. If you send an email comment directly to EPA without going through www.regulations.gov, your email address will be automatically captured and included as part of the comment that is placed in the public docket and made available on the Internet. If you submit an electronic comment, EPA recommends that you include your name and other contact information in the body of your comment and with any disk or CD-ROM you submit. If EPA cannot read your comment due to technical difficulties and cannot contact you for clarification, EPA may not be able to consider your comment. Electronic files should avoid the use of special characters, any form of encryption, and be free of any defects or viruses.

Docket: All documents in the electronic docket are listed in the www.regulations.gov index. Although listed in the index, some information is not publicly available, i.e., CBI or other information whose disclosure is restricted by statute. Certain other material, such as copyrighted material, is not placed on the Internet and will be publicly available only in hard copy form. Publicly available docket materials are available either electronically in www.regulations.gov or in hard copy during normal business hours at the Air Protection Division, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Region III, 1650 Arch Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103. Copies of the State submittal are available at the Maryland Department of Start Printed Page 73443the Environment, 1800 Washington Boulevard, Suite 705, Baltimore, Maryland 21230.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ruth Knapp, (215) 814-2191, or by email at knapp.ruth@epa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

Section 128 of the CAA requires SIPs to comply with the requirements regarding State Boards. Section 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) of the CAA also references these requirements. Section 128(a) of the CAA requires SIPs to contain provisions that: (1) Any board or body which approves permits or enforcement orders under the CAA shall have at least a majority of its members represent the public interest and not derive any significant portion of their income from persons subject to permits or enforcement orders under the CAA; and (2) any potential conflict of interest by members of such board or body or the head of an executive agency with similar powers be adequately disclosed. The requirements of section 128(a)(1) are not applicable to Maryland because it does not have any board or body which approves air quality permits or enforcement orders. The requirements of section 128(a)(2), however, are applicable because the heads of Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) and the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC), or their designees, approve permits or enforcement orders within Maryland.

II. Summary of SIP Revision

On August 14, 2013, the State of Maryland, through MDE, submitted a SIP revision (#13-03B) that addresses the requirements of sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) for all criteria pollutants of the NAAQS in relation to State Boards. This submission was part of a larger SIP revision submitted on the same date. However, EPA will take separate rulemaking action on the remainder of that revision. Maryland's statutory provisions governing the relevant section 128 requirements are found in the Annotated Code of Maryland Title 15 (Public Ethics). The Secretary of MDE and the state employees subordinate to the position, as well as the state employees at the PSC, are subject to the requirements of Title 15. In order to meet the requirements of CAA Sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii), Maryland is seeking to incorporate into the SIP the relevant provisions of Title 15, including certain portions of: Subtitle 1, sections 15-102 and 15-103; and, subtitle 6, sections 15-601, 15-602, 15-607, and 15-608. The State effective dates for these subsections of Title 15 are listed in the table in 40 CFR 52.1070(c) and are the “last amended” dates for the statutory sections, which include these subsections, according to Michie's Annotated Code of Maryland.

III. EPA's Analysis of Maryland's SIP Revision

Sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) require that each state's SIP demonstrates how state boards, bodies or heads of executive agencies which approve CAA permits or enforcement orders disclose any potential conflicts of interest. The Secretary of MDE or his designee approves all CAA permits and enforcement orders in Maryland with the exception of pre-construction permits for electric generating stations that receive a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN) from the PSC. MDE is an executive agency that acts through its Secretary or a delegated subordinate state employee. The PSC also acts through its Commissioners or delegated subordinates to approve permits. MDE submitted relevant provisions of the Annotated Code of Maryland, Title 15 for inclusion into the SIP as required by sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii). Title 15 applies to state employees and requires them to disclose relevant financial information. This SIP revision reflects the existing law and demonstrates that Maryland complies with the requirements of sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) of the CAA through the Maryland Title 15 requirements for adequate disclosure of potential conflicts of interest.

IV. Final Action

EPA is approving the Maryland SIP revision that addresses the requirements of sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) of the CAA for all criteria pollutants of the NAAQS. EPA is publishing this rule without prior proposal because EPA views this as a noncontroversial amendment and anticipates no adverse comment. However, in the “Proposed Rules” section of today's Federal Register, EPA is publishing a separate document that will serve as the proposal to approve the SIP revision if adverse comments are filed. This rule will be effective on February 4, 2014 without further notice unless EPA receives adverse comment by January 6, 2014. If EPA receives adverse comment, EPA will publish a timely withdrawal in the Federal Register informing the public that the rule will not take effect. EPA will address all public comments in a subsequent final rule based on the proposed rule. EPA will not institute a second comment period on this action. Any parties interested in commenting must do so at this time. Please note that if EPA receives adverse comment on an amendment, paragraph, or section of this rule and if that provision may be severed from the remainder of the rule, EPA may adopt as final those provisions of the rule that are not the subject of an adverse comment.

V. Statutory and Executive Order Reviews

A. General Requirements

Under the CAA, the Administrator is required to approve a SIP submission that complies with the provisions of the CAA and applicable Federal regulations. 42 U.S.C. 7410(k); 40 CFR 52.02(a). Thus, in reviewing SIP submissions, EPA's role is to approve state choices, provided that they meet the criteria of the CAA. Accordingly, this action merely approves state law as meeting Federal requirements and does not impose additional requirements beyond those imposed by state law. For that reason, this action:

  • Is not a “significant regulatory action” subject to review by the Office of Management and Budget under Executive Order 12866 (58 FR 51735, October 4, 1993);
  • does not impose an information collection burden under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.);
  • is certified as not having a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. 601 et seq.);
  • does not contain any unfunded mandate or significantly or uniquely affect small governments, as described in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (Pub. L. 104-4);
  • does not have Federalism implications as specified in Executive Order 13132 (64 FR 43255, August 10, 1999);
  • is not an economically significant regulatory action based on health or safety risks subject to Executive Order 13045 (62 FR 19885, April 23, 1997);
  • is not a significant regulatory action subject to Executive Order 13211 (66 FR 28355, May 22, 2001);
  • is not subject to requirements of Section 12(d) of the National Technology Transfer and Advancement Act of 1995 (15 U.S.C. 272 note) because application of those requirements would be inconsistent with the CAA; and
  • does not provide EPA with the discretionary authority to address, as appropriate, disproportionate human health or environmental effects, using Start Printed Page 73444practicable and legally permissible methods, under Executive Order 12898 (59 FR 7629, February 16, 1994).

In addition, this rule does not have tribal implications as specified by Executive Order 13175 (65 FR 67249, November 9, 2000), because the SIP is not approved to apply in Indian country located in the state, and EPA notes that it will not impose substantial direct costs on tribal governments or preempt tribal law.

B. Submission to Congress and the Comptroller General

The Congressional Review Act, 5 U.S.C. 801 et seq., as added by the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act of 1996, generally provides that before a rule may take effect, the agency promulgating the rule must submit a rule report, which includes a copy of the rule, to each House of the Congress and to the Comptroller General of the United States. EPA will submit a report containing this action and other required information to the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the Comptroller General of the United States prior to publication of the rule in the Federal Register. A major rule cannot take effect until 60 days after it is published in the Federal Register. This action is not a “major rule” as defined by 5 U.S.C. 804(2).

C. Petitions for Judicial Review

Under section 307(b)(1) of the CAA, petitions for judicial review of this action must be filed in the United States Court of Appeals for the appropriate circuit by February 4, 2014. Filing a petition for reconsideration by the Administrator of this final rule does not affect the finality of this action for the purposes of judicial review nor does it extend the time within which a petition for judicial review may be filed, and shall not postpone the effectiveness of such rule or action. Parties with objections to this direct final rule are encouraged to file a comment in response to the parallel notice of proposed rulemaking for this action published in the proposed rules section of today's Federal Register, rather than file an immediate petition for judicial review of this direct final rule, so that EPA can withdraw this direct final rule and address the comment in the proposed rulemaking action. This action, approving the Maryland SIP revision for purposes of meeting sections 128 and 110(a)(2)(E)(ii) requirements for all criteria pollutants of the NAAQS in relation to State Boards, may not be challenged later in proceedings to enforce its requirements. (See section 307(b)(2).)

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 40 CFR Part 52

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Dated: November 14, 2013.

W.C. Early,

Acting Regional Administrator, Region III.

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40 CFR part 52 is amended as follows:

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PART 52—APPROVAL AND PROMULGATION OF IMPLEMENTATION PLANS

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1. The authority citation for part 52 continues to read as follows:

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Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq.

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Subpart V—Maryland

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2. In § 52.1070, the table in paragraph (c) is amended by adding six entries under a new heading “State Government Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland” at the end of the table.

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The added text reads as follows:

Identification of plan.
* * * * *

(c) * * *

EPA-Approved Regulations, Technical Memoranda, and Statutes in the Maryland SIP

Code of Maryland Administrative Regulations (COMAR) citationTitle/subjectState effective dateEPA approval dateAdditional explanation/citation at 40 CFR 52.1100
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
Annotated Code of Maryland citationTitle/subjectState effective dateEPA approval dateAdditional explanation/citation at 40 CFR 52.1100
*         *         *         *         *         *         *
State Government Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland
Section 15-102(a)(1), (a)(2)(bb), (a)(2)(ff), and (a)(2)(ll)Definitions10/1/1212/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
Section 15-103(a), (b)(1) and (b)(2), and (f)Designation of Individuals as public officials10/1/9512/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
Section 15-601(a)Individuals required to file statement10/1/0412/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
Section 15-602(a)(1) through (a)(5)Financial disclosure statement—Filing requirements10/1/0812/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
Section 15-607(a) through (j)Content of statements10/1/0412/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
Section 15-608(a) through (c)Interests attributable to individual filing statement10/1/9512/6/13 [Insert page number where the document begins]Added; addresses CAA section 128.
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[FR Doc. 2013-28956 Filed 12-5-13; 8:45 am]

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