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Proposed Revisions to Conduct of Operations

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AGENCY:

Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

ACTION:

Standard review plan-draft section revision; request for comment.

SUMMARY:

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is revising the following sections and soliciting public comment on the following sections in Chapter 13, “Conduct of Operations,” of NUREG-0800, “Standard Review Plan for the Review of Safety Analysis Reports for Nuclear Power Plants: LWR Edition,” Section 13.1.1, “Management and Technical Support Organization”; Section 13.1.2-13.1.3, “Operating Organization”; Section 13.2.1, “Reactor Operator Requalification Program; Reactor Operator Training”; Section 13.2.2, “Non-licensed Plant Staff Training”; Section 13.5.1.1, “Administrative Procedures—,General”; and Section 13.5.2.1, “Operating and Emergency Operating Procedures.”

DATES:

Submit comments by November 24, 2014. Comments received after this date will be considered, if it is practical to do so, but the Commission is only able to ensure consideration only for comments received on or before this date.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by any of the following methods (unless this document describes a different method for submitting comments on a specific subject):

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search Start Printed Page 57142for Docket ID NRC-2014-0203. Address questions about NRC dockets to Carol Gallagher; telephone: 301-287-3422; email: Carol.Gallagher@nrc.gov. For technical questions, contact the individual listed in the FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT section of this document.
  • Mail comments to: Cindy Bladey, Office of Administration, Mail Stop: 3WFN-06-44M, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001.

For additional direction on accessing information and submitting comments, see “Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments” in the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION section of this document.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jonathan DeGange, Office of New Reactors, U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Washington, DC 20555-0001; telephone: 301-415-6992 or email to: Jonathan.DeGange@nrc.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Obtaining Information and Submitting Comments

A. Obtaining Information

Please refer to Docket ID NRC-2014-0203 when contacting the NRC about the availability of information regarding this document. You may obtain publicly-available information related to this action by the following methods:

  • Federal Rulemaking Web site: Go to http://www.regulations.gov and search for Docket ID NRC-2014-0203.
  • NRC's Agencywide Documents Access and Management System (ADAMS):

You may obtain 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. For the convenience of the reader, instructions about obtaining materials referenced in this document are provided in the “Availability of Documents” section.

  • 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-2014-0203 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 will post all comment submissions at http://www.regulations.gov as well as enter 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 that they do not want to be publicly disclosed in their comment submissions. 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. Availability of Documents

The ADAMS accession numbers for the current revisions, proposed draft revisions, and redline strikeouts comparing current revisions and the proposed revisions of individual sections are available in ADAMS under the following accession numbers:

SRP SectionCurrent revisionDraft revisionRedline strikeout
13.1.1ML070460302MB13311B662ML13330B669
13.1.2-13.1.3ML070250009ML13311B719ML13330B690
13.2.1ML070100636ML13311B565ML13330B645
13.2.2ML070100637ML14030A091ML14051A028
13.5.1.1ML112730402ML13115A067ML13115A093
13.5.2.1ML070100635ML13311B514ML13311B773

III. Further Information

The NRC seeks public comments on the proposed revision of Standard Review Plan (SRP) Sections 13.1.1, 13.1.2-13.1.3, 13.2.1, 13.2.2, 13.5.1.1, and 13.5.2.1. The changes to SRP Chapter 13 reflect the current staff reviews, methods and practices based on lessons learned from the NRC's reviews of design certification and combined license applications completed since the last revision of this chapter. The draft SRP sections, if finalized, would provide guidance to the staff for reviewing applications for a construction permit and an operating license under part 50 of Title 10 of the Code of Federal Regulations (10 CFR) with respect to conduct of operations. The draft SRP sections would also provide guidance for reviewing an application for a standard design approval, a standard design certification, a combined license, and a manufacturing license under 10 CFR part 52 with respect to those same subject matters.

Following the NRC staff's evaluation of public comments, the NRC intends to finalize the revised SRP Sections 13.1.1, 13.1.2-13.1.3, 13.2.1, 13.2.2, 13.5.1.1, and 13.5.2.1 in ADAMS and post the revised sections on the NRC's public Web site at http://www.nrc.gov/​reading-rm/​doc-collections/​nuregs/​staff/​sr0800/​. The SRP is guidance for the NRC staff. The SRP is not a substitute for the NRC's regulations, and compliance with the SRP is not required.

IV. Backfitting and Issue Finality

Issuance of the draft SRP sections, if finalized, would not constitute backfitting as defined in 10 CFR 50.109 (the Backfit Rule) or otherwise be inconsistent with the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52. The NRC's position is based upon the following considerations.

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

The SRP provides interim guidance to the 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 applicants or licensees are protected under 10 CFR 50.109 or issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52.

2. Backfitting and issue finality—with certain exceptions discussed below—do not protect current or future applicants. Start Printed Page 57143

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. This is because neither the Backfit Rule nor the issue finality provisions under 10 CFR part 52—with certain exclusions discussed below—was intended to apply to every NRC's action which 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 staff does not, at this time, intend to impose the positions represented in the draft SRP sections (if finalized) 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 sections (if finalized) in a manner which 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.

3. The staff has no intention to impose the draft SRP positions on existing nuclear power plant licenses or regulatory approvals either now or in the future (absent a voluntary request for change from the licensee, holder of a regulatory approval, or a design certification applicant).

The staff does not intend to impose or apply the positions described in the draft SRP sections to existing (already issued) licenses (e.g., operating licenses and combined licenses) and regulatory approvals. Hence, the draft SRPs—even if considered guidance which is within the purview of the issue finality provisions in 10 CFR part 52—need not be evaluated as if it were a backfit or as being inconsistent with issue finality provisions. If, in the future, the staff seeks to impose a position in the draft SRPs (if finalized) on holders of already issued licenses in a manner which 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 applicable issue finality provision, as applicable.

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Dated at Rockville, Maryland, this 12th day of September, 2014.

For the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

Joseph Colaccino,

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

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[FR Doc. 2014-22733 Filed 9-23-14; 8:45 am]

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